E-cigarettes are electrical appliances - We collect and dispose of them

10 million - that's how many e-cigarettes were imported into Switzerland in 2022. And the peak has not yet been reached: according to industry estimates, sales continue to rise by 30% annually. The environment suffers as a result. Because most e-cigarettes end up in the waste instead of being recycled. SENS eRecycling has therefore launched a new industry solution. The aim is to collect 50% of the e-cigarettes sold and dispose of them properly.

E-cigarettes (vapes) are electrical devices powered by a rechargeable battery. In Switzerland, they are subject to the Ordinance on the Return, Take-Back and Disposal of Electrical and Electronic Equipment (ORDEE). Manufacturers, importers and dealers are therefore legally obliged to take back all types of discarded e-cigarettes.

And not without reason: e-cigarettes contain many recyclable materials. These include nickel, lithium and aluminium, which can be recycled. They are also highly flammable and contain substances that are harmful to the environment. Nevertheless, the majority of disposed e-cigarettes end up in the rubbish. On the one hand, because many people do not even know that e-cigarettes are electronic devices, and on the other hand, because until now there has been no uniform disposal solution for e-cigarettes in Switzerland.

Disposing of e-cigarettes in an environmentally friendly way - that's how it works!
Since 1 July 2023, SENS eRecycling and the Swiss Vape Trade Association (SVTA) have been offering an industry solution for the environmentally sound disposal of e-cigarettes.Every manufacturer, importer or retailer who voluntarily joins the industry solution benefits from a standardised process for the collection, dispatch and recycling of e-cigarettes. And this is how it works:SENS eRecycling supplies all partners in the industry solution with so-called vape recycling bags.The sales outlets can collect the returned e-cigarettes in these bags and send them back to SENS eRecycling by post (see diagram 1). Alternatively, discarded e-cigarettes can be handed in free of charge - also by consumers themselves - at the more than 750 SENS collection points in Switzerland.

You can find the nearest collection point via the Recycling Map. Contractual partners can order additional vape recycling bags directly via the vape-recycler.ch website.

10 centimes - that's how much recycling costs
SENS eRecycling finances the costs of collection, transport, consumer awareness and recycling of e-cigarettes through an advanced recycling contribution (ARC). This currently amounts to 10 centimes for disposable and reusable e-cigarettes as well as battery carriers with one battery. It costs 5 centimes for a battery carrier without a battery. The ARC is levied by the manufacturer or importer as a fixed amount on the sales price and paid by the consumer when purchasing the products.

Become a vape recycler
As of January 1, 2023, so many manufacturers, importers and dealers have already signed the affiliation agreement with the SENS eRecycling take-back system that we have reached a market share of 50 percent. Other interested manufacturers, importers or retailers in Switzerland and the Principality of Liechtenstein who want to support the environmentally friendly disposal of e-cigarettes are welcome to join the industry solution at any time. Together, we want to collect 50% of the e-cigarettes sold and dispose of them in an environmentally friendly way.

Are you already a partner? - Order Vape Recycling Bags here
Order Vape Recycling Bags for your shop here. This will enable your customers to easily collect and dispose of their vapes. With a full vape recycling bag, you help to return valuable materials to the material cycle.