Archive for August, 2009

(Bottled) water everywhere!

Friday, August 28th, 2009

Aquadeco Glass Bottled WaterBottled Water of the World: quite possibly the biggest and most comprehensive resource of bottled water there is. Pretty much every bottled water available is categorised, analysed and describ-ised in a handy database that reveals such beautiful bottles as Bling H2O, the pop-culture water bottle that was first only made available to hand-selected Hollywood actors and Aquadeco, which as the name suggests, comes in an exquisite art deco glass bottle.

The website is certainly worth a visit, as it does speak a lot about the defining characteristics of various bottled water varieties. Say the authors:

Water is not Water. At first glance, waters may not seem to have the individual characteristics that distinguish wines, but distinct differences become apparent when the attention is focused on water. Like wine, water has terroir and it is a natural product that originates from a particular place with unique properties. That is of course if you drink premium bottled water.

The authors analyse and rate water bottles according to flavour, hardness and vintage (among other criteria). What’s interesting is that the ‘bottled water etiquette’ they espouse touches on the difference between drinking bottled water from a glass or plastic bottle – even if it’s for appearances only:

For high-end bottled waters, the glass bottle is a must. If you want to drink the still water from an ugly plastic bottle in an epicurean context, decant it or put the bottle into a sleeve.

There’s an interesting section on the glass vs plastic taste debate, where the authors mention that they’ve found no evidence of any taste difference between glass and plastic. On a scientific level, there is indeed a difference, but on a personal taste level, the jury is still out.

What say you?

Challenge Glass week – win a trip to Belgium!

Thursday, August 27th, 2009

foglogoSo next week is ‘Challenge Glass Week’, a seven day journey looking at glass in a whole host of different ways to promote the world’s only 100% recyclable material. The challenges are super-simple, but allow room to add your own twist, and we’ll invite the most active and creative participants from across Europe on a VIP trip to Belgium for Choose Glass Week on Sept 26th – 27th.

Each daily challenge can be completed however you like, whether via photo, blogpost, tweet or any other more creative means. As long as it’s posted online and tagged #challengeglass.

The questions follow, and if you’d like to take part, fantastic! We’ll be profiling some of the best entries here on the blog during next week.

Monday – Use a glass bottle in a manner not initially intended by its manufacturers….
Tuesday – Share a perfect 5 track glass themed playlist on social networking or audio sharing sites
Wednesday – Create a glass inspired haiku
Thursday – Find or make a glass based video to share
Friday – Create a piece of glass-art, using only materials found in one’s bathroom
Saturday – Enjoy a ‘glass themed’ night in, or out – with pictures documenting it… Don’t forget to #tweetrecycle though!
Sunday – Take a picture of an inspiring view through a glass object (e.g. a glass bottle)

We can’t wait to see your entries.  Good luck!

Friends of Glass Award for the Most Original and Creative Glass Packaging – vote now!

Wednesday, August 26th, 2009

For the last few weeks, we’ve been asking you to nominate the glass packaging you believe is most creatively and aesthetically appealing…

The results are in, counted and from hundreds of nominations we’re whittled down to a shortlist of 10… And what a selection… We’ll be featuring each product more closely starting in a week or so, but in the meanwhile do feel free to vote – and help us decide which product should be crowned the best glass packaging out there.

All it takes is a quick click to register your opinion, and each product is linked through to give you a real taster of what you’re voting for. So take a look at the selections, and make your voice heard… Thanks to widgetbox for providing the survey too.

First stop London…. Next we #tweetrecycle the world

Tuesday, August 25th, 2009

balloon-congratualtionsWe’ve done it! Incredible scenes of delight at #tweetrecycle HQ as between us all, we’ve not only reached the #tweetrecycle target of recycling enough glass to power the street-lights of London for 5 minutes – we’ve smashed it!

Snare drums, bright lights and a trumpet fanfare please… We needed 75,000 bottles to power the street lights of London for 5 minutes, and now we’ve reached a magnificent 105,019. This is phenomenal work and down to everyone who tweetrecycled, and has taken this on board so heartily… Thank you all so much.

We don’t want it to stop there though… Oh no! So we’re asking you where we should go next… What target do you think #tweetrecycle should aspire to? Let us know by commenting below or dropping an email to camilla.brown@friendsofglass.com.

Special mention also today should go to @EMERGERecycling, who have recycled a staggering amount of bottles today, tweeting @GlassFriendsUK A 75cl glass bottle weighs c500g, so something like c25,130 units is probably about right. #tweetrecycle ~AW’. Thanks guys, and congratulations on those impressive levels of recycling.

Vending machines that recycle glass for cash

Friday, August 21st, 2009

What a novel way for people to recycle! Everybody is au fait with the standard vending machine as a way of receiving bottles of drink, but how about going the other way and vending your glass bottles right back in for recycling.

Bearing a look very similar to your average vending machine, they’re designed to accept, clean and crush recyclable materials – of which brown, green and clear glass are all accepted. So far, so eco-friendly, and even better is their claim to reduce carbon emissions by preparing the recycled materials for direct shipment to a glass recycling plant.

Whatsmore, they even offer coupons, cash credit or vouchers from the machine to be used at neighbouring shops for anyone who needs that extra incentive to recycle their waste – our only question is can they #tweetrecycle?

We’re told that the manufacturer of these machines, Envirobank, has “deployed a few machines throughout Australia on a trial basis. If those work out expect to see recycling machines on street corners everywhere in the very near future.”

Scientific evidence of new harmful chemicals released in ‘Plastic Ocean’

Thursday, August 20th, 2009

Bleak news reaches us today from the science editor of The Independent, with the revelation that a new source of chemical pollution has been identified – released by the huge amounts of plastic rubbish found floating in the oceans of the world.

This story will no doubt come as a massive blow to those concerned with our marine habitats, once again highlighting the great damage being daily inflicted on our oceans. With an area estimated to be twice the size of Texas in the North Pacific permanently covered in a layer of floating marine litter, this research suggests that not only can this mess of plastic be a danger to animals who get stuck in, or ingest the plastic – but that the dissolved substances can easily become widely dispersed in the marine environment causing further damage.

The scientists found that when plastics decompose in the ocean they release a range of chemicals, said to be potentially toxic to both humans and animals, such as Bisphenol A and substances known as polystyrene-based (PS) Oligomers, which are not found naturally. Bisphenol A has been implicated in disrupting the hormonal system of animals.

It is estimated that there could be hundreds of millions of tons of plastic rubbish floating in the world’s oceans in total. In Japan alone, around 150,000 tons of plastic is washed up on its shores each year. Whether this damage is so widespread it is becoming irreversible is a question up for debate, but what is for sure is that this issue serves to highlight the fact that we MUST take a global look at our packaging habits – or face the consequences of steadily destroying all of the natural resources we have left.

Read more at The Independent, or leave your comment below.

Get your nominations in for the most creative and original glass packaging – deadline extended

Tuesday, August 18th, 2009

Over 50 nominations have been submitted for the Friends of Glass award for the most original and creative glass packaging thus far, but just to ensure that everyone has those last few days to submit their favourite glass packaging, we’re holding nominations open until Sunday night. Whatever it may be, from a clean-cut bottle of juice to an intricate crystal glass perfume bottle – it’s up to you…

To participate and submit your favourite glass packaging, simply email camilla.brown@friendsofglass.com, leave a comment below or tweet @GlassFriendsUK if you are on Twitter. The voting will begin next Monday, so let us know what brands you’d like to see in the shortlist with a picture or link if possible!

Help us find the most creative and original glass packaging in the world!

#Tweetrecycle update – broken that 40,000 barrier!

Monday, August 17th, 2009

slIt’s a happy day again here at #tweetrecycle HQ as I can reveal that we’re well over half way to our target of powering the City of London streetlights for five minutes. A strong weekend of recycling from a number of tweetrecyclers ensured that by the end of the weekend, between almost 450 people, we’ve managed to recycle 41,106 bottles. Congratulations everyone!

Special mention should go to @SylvieVer who proved that cleaning up old rubbish can be a voyage of discovery, 79 empties from elder people: old Stella, old Duvel, old Coke (perished in 1997!)”, and @Chooseglass who evidently did just that, and recycled 11 glass containers this week. Meanwhile, @dacake promised “in Capracotta we never drink… 18 bottles” – and @benwerd assured us “14 bottles, 7 jars. (Cleared out the kitchen, not all alcohol!)”

Thanks so much to all of you guys, and everyone else who’s helped us out… Keep it up!

Magnificent glass (c)art

Friday, August 14th, 2009

shattered-glass-carFriday afternoon is the ideal time to sit back and be impressed with someone elses painstaking creation, and lo – courtesy of artcar blogspot comes this image of a Maserati Quattroporte – covered with 1,763lbs of shattered glass.

Created by Italian artist Luca Pancrazzi and (we imagine) not entirely road-safe, it does however look absolutely awe inspiring. “Wow!!! there are definitely a few things I don’t want do with this car: 1)Fall on it 2)Collide with it 3)Come near it. But its beautiful in a weird kind of way. It’s a car that could maybe belong to Superman” says author Costas – and I’m inclined to agree.

For those who enjoy cruising around in flash, expensive cars though – this would take some beating!

Make your own outdoor Tiki lanterns and recycle too!

Thursday, August 13th, 2009

tikiGarden lighting can be rather expensive and notoriously unreliable. But designspongeonline.com (via Erik Anderson of Gerardot & co) may just have solved the problem. Take a look at this super, yet fairly simple method of creating back garden Tiki Torches. “It’s been a record year for mosquitoes” says Erik of his creation “and I’d been wanting to add some Tiki-esque torches to the patio to combat the little buggers, as well as provide some ambiance in the evenings.”

“I love the way these torches look and am dying to find a backyard to use these in” gushes the author – and it’s not hard to see why. With a safety warning caveat that the Tiki brand recommends that the wick never be set higher than 1-inch, the full instructions, probable cost (roughly £3) and the simple truth that this “is a great way to recycle a wine bottle” all combine to make this a very worthy project.

Go and find full Tiki Bottle instructions here – and let us know if you manage to make one!