Baling wire for recycling foam

According to the EPA, 80,000 tons of foam waste were generated in 2018, the vast majority of which ended up in landfills. We’d like to see more foam recycled, and we proudly support the recycling industry with high-quality wire products.

Our partnership with foam recyclers

Baling wire is an essential component of efficient foam recycling operations. Baling Wire Direct promotes sustainable practices and manufactures high-quality wire products for foam reclamation efforts.

Our baling wire is made from 100% American steel. This allows us to support domestic industry, cut carbon emissions through local shipping, and provide superior quality products. Our products suffer less breakage, allowing our recycling partners to get more done and save money.

Our recycling commitment goes beyond supplying baling wire. We also advocate for recycling used baling wire. This process allows recyclers to operate more sustainably and keep precious resources within the recycling loop.

With our commitment to quality and eco-conscious practices, we are positioned as an ally to the foam recycling industry

The future of the foam recycling market

A significant amount of foam waste ends up in landfills. However, there is a growing emphasis on embedding sustainability throughout the foam industry, particularly in end-of-life management and recycling practices.

Recycled foams are becoming more attractive to buyers due to their lower price, and contribute to supply chain circularity and sustainability.

The demand for foam products is increasing, leading to a wider application range and higher resource consumption. As demand increases, recycling efforts enacted at a political level are stimulating innovation and providing financial incentives for recyclers to compete in the market.

The main sources of recyclable foam

The main sources of recyclable foam include:

  • Foam packaging. Expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam packaging, commonly found in food product containers, can be recycled.
  • Foam products. Products made of polystyrene and polyurethane foam used include items such as takeout containers, beverage containers, and packaging materials.
  • Industrial waste. Foam waste generated from industrial usage, including foam products and packaging, contributes to the recyclable foam stream.

These sources present opportunities for recycling and reprocessing foam materials, contributing to resource preservation and waste reduction efforts.

The foam recycling process

The foam recycling process typically involves the following steps:

  1. Foam waste is collected.
  2. The collected foam is shredded or crushed into small pieces to facilitate recycling and reduce its volume for transportation.
  3. The shredded foam may undergo a cleaning process to remove any contaminants or impurities.
  4. The shredded and cleaned foam is then densified or compacted to further reduce its volume, making it more cost-effective for transportation and storage.
  5. The densified foam may then undergo extrusion or granulation to form pellets or other recycled foam materials, which can be used in the manufacturing of new products.
  6. The recycled foam materials are then ready to be transported to manufacturing facilities where they can be reused in the production of new foam products.

The foam recycling process reduces the environmental impact of foam waste.

Benefits of recycling foam

The benefits of recycling foam include:

  • Resource preservation. Recycling foam reduces the demand for non-renewable resources, particularly petroleum, which is extensively used in foam production.
  • Waste reduction. Large quantities of non-degradable foam waste are diverted from landfills.
  • Circular economy. Recycled foams are lower in price compared to virgin foams, making them more attractive to buyers and strengthening supply through circularity.
  • Job creation. The foam recycling and processing industry chain creates job opportunities.

Challenges of recycling foam

The challenges of recycling foam include:

  • Lack of infrastructure. The US lacks a comprehensive foam recycling infrastructure, making it difficult to effectively manage foam waste.
  • Complex recycling process. Foam materials, particularly polyurethane, are complex and challenging to recycle.
  • Supply chain disruptions. Global factors such as geopolitical relations and material shortages have impacted the foam supply chain.
  • Transportation costs. The large volume of foam waste increases transportation costs, making it difficult for recycling businesses to justify shipment.

Best baling wire for recycling foam

We make world-class baling wire products for use in recycling foam. Some of our wire products for baling foam include:

  • Galvanized wire. Known for its strength and durability, wire that has undergone the galvanization process is ideal for bales that will be stored outdoors.
  • Black annealed wire. This type of wire undergoes an annealing process to become more pliable and easy to use.
  • Stem wire. Our baler wire is available in large spools known as stems. Stem wire is used in automatic balers and allows operations to avoid downtime accrued by switching boxes. Stem wire is offered with a galvanized or annealed finish.
  • Bale ties. We offer bale ties with both single loop and double loop configurations.

Our galvanized products are coated to Class 1 or Class 3 galvanization. Class 1 galvanization is cheaper upfront, but Class 3 galvanization offers substantially greater corrosion resistance and economy over time.

Common types of balers used in foam recycling

Foam balers are used to make the recycling process more efficient and cost-effective. Different types of balers are commonly used in the foam recycling industry, including vertical balers, horizontal balers, and two-ram balers.

  • Vertical balers are a leading option for compacting foam in smaller operations. They require less floor space and are generally less expensive. Operators typically hand-tie bales using single loop bale ties.
  • Horizontal balers are capable of managing far greater material volumes. They are typically automatic and suitable for large-scale industrial operations.
  • Two-ram balers offer an additional ram and generally have a wider feed. This allows greater volumes of material to be baled at a time, and the second ram produces more consistent bale sizes.

Our foam baling wire sizes

Our wire products are a perfect choice for foam baling applications. We sell wire in a wide variety of common sizes that are compatible with most baling machines.

Gauge is the standard way of sizing baling wire for recycling. Wire diameter is inversely correlated to wire gauge, meaning that a larger wire diameter corresponds to a smaller gauge wire.

Our single and double-loop bale ties come in 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, and 14 gauge (with half sizes available in select products).

Foam baling wire recycling categories

We offer a wide range of foam baling products. Order bulk quantities of stem wire, box wire, or bale ties. Click on any category to learn more.

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EPA. (2023, November 22). Frequent Questions regarding EPA's Facts and Figures about Materials, Waste and Recycling | US EPA. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Retrieved January 16, 2024, from

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