The SARCAN Story – Crushing It Since 1988
By Sydney Smith, SARCAN Communications Officer
SARC is celebrating 50 years throughout 2018, but did you know that SARCAN Recycling is also celebrating its 30th Anniversary throughout the month of July? We thought we would share a little bit about the SARCAN story and how it all began 30 years ago!
SARCAN – the recycling division of SARC started in May of 1988, after SARC was awarded the exclusive contract to collect and recycle non-refillable beverage containers from the Government of Saskatchewan. Prior to 1988, only refillable beverage containers were allowed in the province.
When SARC and its Members established SARCAN, it began with 32 depots set up either right within Member Agency buildings, or renting out a space in their community.
Right from the very beginning in 1988, the vision of SARCAN was to provide meaningful employment opportunities to individuals experiencing disability throughout the province. SARCAN quickly adopted the motto of “real work for real pay”, and the new SARCAN staff of over 200 people set out to get started on creating Saskatchewan’s new beverage container recycling network.
People often wonder where the name SARCAN came from, and the answer is just simply that SARC was starting to recycle Cans, so the name SARCAN seemed like a good fit. Since then, our products have expanded to include all types of ready to serve beverage containers, as well as end of life electronics and household paint recycling.
All of the products that SARCAN recycles are turned into new and useful materials. For more information on the recycling process, please watch “The Incredible Journey of a Beverage Container.”
Now, as we reflect on 30 years, the products we accept have expanded, the people and the locations we serve has expanded, and our employment network has grown to over 700 people; but our establishing core values of providing environmental protection, economic development and employment creation has remained the foundation of what we do every day, 30 years later.
The future of SARCAN continues to be bright as we work towards modernizing the system. In the last number of years, SARCAN has invested in its facilities and its people with new initiatives in safety, training and communications, and modern depots and processing plants.