One year after piloting the bike industry’s first carbon fiber recycling program, Trek, in partnership with Materials Innovation Technologies announced that over 70,000 lbs. of carbon fiber have been recycled from its domestic manufacturing facility in Waterloo, Wisconsin. Since April of 2011, all manufacturing scraps, non-compliant frame components, and select reclaimed warranty frames undergo processing at Material Innovation Technologies’ South Carolina facility for repurposing in reinforced thermoplastic applications, including aerospace, automotive, medical and recreational applications.
Trek began manufacturing their OCLV-carbon frames in 1992 and has since grown into a leader in carbon technology, developing road and mountain bike frames. The recycling program closes the loop on the life cycle of one of modern engineering’s most ubiquitous and complex materials.
The carbon recycling program is one of many sustainable efforts Trek has embarked on including, but not limited to, recycled aftermarket product packaging for the Bontrager brand, sourcing frames and components from neighboring factories to reduce shipping emissions, and converting their Waterloo, Wisc., facility entirely to wind power.