Hotel Soap Being Re-Used to Help Needy

By: Joe Harrington Email
By: Joe Harrington Email

RENO, NV - If you've stayed in a hotel, you've probably unwrapped a bar of soap, only to leave it behind after checking out. Now one local hotel-resort is making sure that soap doesn't end up in a landfill, while helping the needy at the same time.

Dave Fuller, director of hotel operations at the Peppermill, said hotel staff are collecting and sorting soap, shampoo and conditioner after guests leave.

"(The cleaning staff) rejoice(s) in doing it because they can see right in front of them how much of this soap is going out to really needy people," he said.

Fuller said the Peppermill is working with a Florida non-profit, called "Clean the World" to recycle the soap. He said the soap is sent to Florida, where it is melted and purified. New bars are made, which are sent to third-world countries, helping prevent poor-hygiene related deaths, Fuller said.

"They have labs that come in, test (the soap) to make sure it's completely germ-free," Fuller said.

With more than 16-hundred rooms at the Peppermill, hundreds of pounds of soap is collected in just a few days.

Fuller said in addition to helping the needy, the program prevents tons of soap from going into a landfill each year.

The program is part of the Peppermill's overall mission to be green. The resort is heated by geothermal and left-over food from restaurants at the Peppermill becomes compost.

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