OverviewOur Green ProductsTen Million TreesRecycle AluminumSustainabilityAlcoa and EarthwatchMine Rehabilitation

Alcoa Recycling website



How cans are made

See the process for making aluminum cans. more 



We're here to help you recycle aluminum. One can at a time.

For as long as Alcoa has been making aluminum, we've been recycling aluminum. In fact, we've been doing this since we invented the smelting process in 1888. That's because aluminum is so valuable and so easy to recycle.

Alcoa Recycling Company was set up in 1978 as the popularity of aluminum beverage cans began to explode. Our mission was to help the public understand how important it is to recycle, and to make it easier to do so.  Today the mission   is still the same, and the reason to recycle is more important than ever. Recycling not only reduces litter and conserves landfill space, it is also an important key to slowing and stopping the growth of greenhouse gases caused by power generation. Making aluminum from aluminum has a tiny fraction of the carbon footprint of making aluminum from ore. And the benefits are so great that it's important to recycle every single scrap. Including that can of Mountain Dew you're drinking  right now.


The ultimate recyclable package


View a video of the entire recycling process. When you recycle an aluminum soda can, it does something few other containers can do: it reappears back on the shelf, probably in 60 days or less, as a brand new soda can. That's because the can's aluminum materials are specially engineered for 100% recycling, with no waste and a minimum of energy input. The world uses billions and billions of cans every year. That's why can recycling is such an important part of the greenhouse picture.