What happens when a non-profit needs a new form of revenue? And when that revenue stream becomes too big? Introducing Arizona Document Destruction, a division of Recycle 1, which provides paper, product and document destruction services to businesses as well as the local community. Not only does the organization carry an intriguing past, but its services also extend much further than what many people initially assume.

A new revenue idea that became wildly popular
Since 1947, what began as The Arizona Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired has been helping locals with visual impairments, as a 501C3 non-profit. It’s goal: to help those over 18 with visual impairments to regain basic daily tasks, such as laundry, cooking, or using public transportation. In 1994, when the ACFTB was looking to increase its funding, one of the members of its Board of Directors suggested document destruction services. It quickly took off and spun off into its own independently operated business, known as Arizona Document Destruction, a part of Recycle 1.

However, Arizona Document Destruction is still tied to Arizona Center for the Blind. It gives a percentage percent of profits to the center annually.

Expansion beyond paper
Arizona Document Destruction shifted once again when the paper market slowed down in the early 2000s. As paper has become less popular, there is less to be shredded. The business modified their base structure and expanded into beverage and product destruction. It all began with a simple client request: Can you remove this powdered product from its plastic bottle?

And, so it began. Arizona Document Destruction invented a system that could shred the bottles (still filled with powder), separate the shredded plastic from powder and then recycle each product. Today, recycling old beverage products works very much the same. Beverages are placed on a conveyor belt, which then feeds into a shredder. Liquids are separated from the container. What can be sent onto farms and dairies goes one way, whereas cans or bottles are sorted for recycling.

Today, Arizona Document Destruction has a total of 12 shredders, each designed to handle a different type of item for destruction.

Business today
Businesses have evolved throughout the last decade to understand the importance of brand management and sustainability. Part of this means that they have a responsibility to destroy products that are expired and no longer safe for consumers. But it’s not all about simply “getting rid” of these old products; Arizona Document Destruction is dedicated to locating an end market for the products it works with.

These services protect brands, but they also offer new revenue streams. It can save a business on landfill fees, transport costs, and create revenue when products can be broken down and resold. It’s good for everyone involved: the business, the consumers, and the planet.