CooperVision (CVI) has launched an initiative in Sweden that offers consumers a service for the free collection and recycling of soft contact lenses, including those of other brands and manufacturers. It aims to reduce plastic waste by providing a convenient way for wearers to recycle lenses, as well as blister and foil packaging.

Wearers have the option of sending used contact lens items directly to CVI's recycling partner, TerraCycle, using pre-paid mailing labels, or of dropping them off at any participating optical store in Sweden.

The company said the program will help consumers understand the impact of the effort, showing how the materials will be recycled for everyday use as plastic lumber, park benches and fence posts.

This initiative comes after CVI intensified its own sustainability efforts at its manufacturing and distribution operations. On average, the company says, more than 95 percent of the materials in its production processes are recycled – into such materials as cardboard, wood, paper and oil. More than 99 percent of the plastic components generated in the manufacturing process are also recycled.