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For those members that were inclined to call or email Epson and Lexmark about their questionable cartridge recycling programs-please add HP to your list. In an article from Lyra Research (Sept. 04 volume 10, number 9), HP has created what they call regional inkjets and machines. To summarize, they will be rolling out 12 new engines this fall that are geographically specific in the cartridges they use. To date, Europe is a major source (apx. 65%) of 'empties' coming into the States for remanufacturing due to their progressive laws and fines. These are channeled through brokers and then sold to rechargers for recycling. Currently, regardless of what continent they are used and discarded, they are compatible with any other market. HP's new line will use what they term "selectability numbering", and cartridges bought and used in Europe will no longer be compatible with the same machine/engine sold in the U.S., Africa, or Asia. Unless American consumers become aware and active in their recycling of spent cartridges, like our European counterparts have been for years, the cost of buying empties from brokers will become so costly that remanufacturing will no longer make fiscal sense. Lexmark's prebate program has only caused a mere inconvenience in my industry, however, because HP's market penetration is so deep, and if they continue this new program with laserjet cartridges, this could signify the slow demise of the recycling aftermarket.

Jason Brown
Recycling Purchasing Manager
Laser Life, Inc.
770-261-5919 Direct Line
770-261-5922 Fax Line
Email: <mailto:jbrown@no.address> jbrown@no.address <>
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