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Review: New and Improved Recycling Magnet

Posted on August 22nd, 2007 Filed under Reviews

As you walk through the grocery store, you sometimes see “New and Improved” across such packaging as laundry detergent or breakfast cereal. Is it really necessary to improve on these already tried and true items? Much of the time, the answer is “no”. In this case, the answer is a resounding, “hail yeah!”

I recently received a large envelope from the City of Phoenix. A banner across the bottom read in bold lettering, “NEW and improved recycling magnet inside!” I usually let my mail pile up for weeks at a time before opening it, but in this case, I ripped it open right then and there. Inside was just as promised.. a shiny new recycling magnet. On to the review..!.

Aesthetics: The layout was very symmetrical. The whitespace left the overall composition with a lack of depth. The icons were well done and provided attention to detail such as uniform backgrounds and light sources. Information was provided without clutter. The finish was in a semi-gloss that matched well with any standard white refrigerator.

Durability: The magnet was actually nothing more than a sheet of paper with 6 circular magnets glued to the back. This has caused creasing in the paper around the magnets. I would not expect this to be able to handle the rigors of every day life without a magnet falling off at some point. With that said, the paper felt like a heavy 12 pound stock with with a thick laminate.

Accessibility: Information was provided in both English and Spanish. English was clearly stated in blue, while Spanish was available in red. Neither distracted from the other. The icons were clear and conveyed acceptable recyclables that even the illiterate could easily understand.

Quality of Content: The main point of the magnet was to illustrate what is acceptable for recycling and what is not. This information was provided concisely. I spent less than 2 minutes reading over the information, and was left with few questions.

Value: This was apparently a comp item from the City of Phoenix for my review services. While I appreciate this, I could not find any resale prices. If the going rate is under $25, I would find this to be of good value to the consumer.

My new recycling magnet is a welcome addition to my refrigerator. Much of the information is obvious, but some was more than helpful. I found that plastic bags, laminated boxes and shredded paper are not to be recycled. These are all items that I have previously placed into my recycling bin and probably thus caused entire shipments of recyclables to be diverted directly to the landfill. The new and improved recycling magnet can help to prevent this ever-so-common scenario. For this, and its few shortcomings, I give this product my highest of ratings.

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