You may be throwing away money with your garbage, especially if it includes a large volume of recyclable products. That's what George Mellios discovered when he became vice-president of logistics for Vienna, Va. -based Entre Computer Centers, a franchisor of computer retail stores. Appalled that the company was spending more than $70,000 a year to haul away corrugated packing material, Mellios contacted a local paper recycler, who agreed to buy it. The proceeds (about $275 per month) cover the rent on a bailer, which Entre uses to flatten the boxes. Meanwhile, the company has cut its trash-removal costs by more than 85%, or about $5,000 per month -- the equivalent of one fairly well-paid executive.
Of course, few companies are as trash-intensive as Entre, but Mellios estimates that recycling can benefit even those spending as little as $5,000 per year on trash removal. And you can probably save more if your local recycler doesn't require bailing, or if you happen to be near a large company that already uses a recycler.