One hundred million pounds and counting. On Oct. 6, 2008, the Ag Container Recycling Council (ACRC) will celebrate a significant milestone — collecting and recycling one hundred million pounds of High Density Polyethylene (HDPE) plastic agricultural and specialty pesticide containers.

To mark this achievement, ACRC will host a celebration and public barbecue at the largest collection site in the United States, the Southampton County Fairgrounds in Courtland, Va. As part of the celebration, ACRC’s contractor, U.S. Ag Recycling, will grind more than 15,000 containers that have been triple-rinsed and delivered to the site by area pesticide users.

ACRC has planned the One Hundred Million Pounds Recycled Celebration to recognize and thank all the organizations in the pesticide container supply chain, and local, state and federal government agencies for their participation and support over the years.

The event will take place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 6 and includes a program and barbecue lunch. Participants are asked to RSVP by Sept. 30 to Joyce Jarvis, via Jjarvis@acrecycle.org or 877-952-2272. Directions to the Fairgrounds are available at www.acrecycle.org.

In Virginia, the state's Plastic Pesticide Container Recycling Program has made a significant contribution to the one hundred million pound total. Since it got under way in 1993, the program has recycled 853,730 plastic pesticide containers which weighed more than one million pounds. The Virginia program is a cooperative effort among the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS), the Virginia Pesticide Control Board, Virginia Cooperative Extension and local governments.

It is administered by local governments under national guidelines developed by the ACRC. VDACS provides grant monies to participating local governments to defray the costs.

The Ag Container Recycling Council’s nationwide collection and recycling program, which ACRC calls “arguably the oldest industry product stewardship initiative in the U.S.,” has been in operation since 1992. By collecting and recycling triple-rinsed plastic pesticide containers, the program promotes public health and safety, environmental responsibility, resource conservation and customer convenience.

Plastic recovered in the program is fabricated into products such as field drain tile, treated lumber substitutes and underground utility conduit.

Find additional information about ACRC at www.acrecycle.org and about the Virginia Plastic Pesticide Container Recycling Program at http://www.vdacs.virginia.gov/pesticides/recycling.shtml.