Here are our most frequently-asked questions. If you don't find an answer to your question feel free to send us an email enquiry and we'll do our best to get back to you as soon as possible.
Just visit the recycling dashboard and you'll get step by step instructions on how to recycle. It's recommended that you register as a supporter, but it's optional.
There are different instructions depending on what types you have and quantities. Some cartridges can be sent to us right now using a printable Freepost label, and for others we can offer free collections.
For mobile phones and consumer electronics / gadgets we'll give you a printable prepaid label to use to send these.
Empty ink and toner cartridges raise up to £2.75 each, and usually between £1 and £2 for popular models. Phones and unused cartridges can be worth many times this — for popular models up to £100 each.
This web site is run by Cartridges4Charity on behalf of The Orchard Trust — we enable charities, organisations, businesses or individuals to raise funds from their own supporters' recycling.
We actually try to ensure that your cartridges are reused instead of recycled. Reusing (that is, professionally cleaning and refilling) an empty cartridge saves up to 2.5kg of CO2 compared with manufacturing a new cartridge from scratch.
This helps to offset the carbon footprint of your printing, and ensures materials that would take hundreds of years to naturally degrade in landfill sites are put to better use.
We need to ensure that the value of your cartridges is enough to cover the costs of collection, and processing, as well as pay you or your beneficiary for them.
This means, as with any other place you can send your cartridges, we will need some information from you about your cartridges before we can offer a free collection or give you a Freepost address to send them to.
You can check your cartridges quickly and easily online.
But don't worry if we can't take your cartridges to help The Orchard Trust — we'll help you to find alternative recycling options.
Some compatible cartridges have recycling value, and can be sent to help raise funds.
Also, if you already qualify for a free collection based on the other empty cartridges you have, then we can take any compatible cartridges at the same time for free.
To ensure we can pass on as much of the value of your cartridges as possible to The Orchard Trust, and ensure that we respond to all enquiries in the order that they were made, please get in touch by email instead.
If possible, please use your own boxes to send your cartridges to us — that way you can reuse existing cardboard boxes instead of using new resources, which is much better for the environment and you don't have to wait for us to deliver boxes before your cartridges are collected.
If you have a large quantity of used toner cartridges, and you're likely to meet the criteria for a free collection, then we can send you boxes if you need them.
I'm afraid we no longer offer these due to cost and complication. Instead, for sending small ink cartridges, please find a strong envelope or Jiffy bag to send your cartridges in, and follow the instructions to print or handwrite the Freepost label from our web site. This way you'll be able to send straight away.
Even better: why not reuse a Jiffy bag that you've received from somewhere else (these are hard to recycle otherwise) and save even more resources!
Cartridges are professionally cleaned, tested and filled with new ink or toner to be sold as 'compatible' cartridges. For unused cartridges we find new homes for these to be used as full cartridges instead of being recycled. Phones are refurbished and sold as second-hand models.
Any that cannot be reused or fail testing are separated into different materials for recycling.