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See also: History of Canning; Cans; Aluminum; Shelf Life


Did you know, every minute, approximately 20,000 steel cans are recycled in the United States? Steel cans, including food, paint and aerosol cans, were recycled at a rate of 58.4% in 2000. The industry remelted more than 18 billion steel cans into new products. That's about 200 cans per every person with Internet access in the U.S. The amount of steel recovered through recycled packaging in 2000 (more than 1.5 million tons) would yield enough steel to build 185,000 steel framed homes or the equivalent number of homes in the state of Wyoming. Now that's a lot of steel!

All steel products, including steel food cans, contain a minimum of 25% recycled content. When you buy steel, you buy recycled! To recycle empty food cans, simply: Empty the steel cans; Place containers in your curbside recycling bin or take them to the local recycling center; and Complete the recycling loop by buying products made with recycled steel.

For more information on where and how to recycle steel food cans in your area, call the Steel Recycling Institute's national consumer information hotline, (voice) 1-800-YES-1-CAN (1-800-937-1226) or visit their Web site at

Information provided by the Canned Food Alliance. 
For hundreds of nutritious, delicious, easy recipes that use canned food, visit



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