Carbide recycling program

Every day is Earth Day with Seco Tools; Program conserves energy and materials while benefiting manufacturers.

March 20, 2014
Manufacturing Group
Materials People/Facilities Machining/Metal Cutting

Troy, Michigan – Seco Tools LLC has released the results of its North American Carbide Recycling Program for 2013. The company collected and processed 125,919 lb (57,235kg) of used carbide tools. Of the total, 110,585 lb (50,265kg) were returned to Seco Tools AB for processing into grade powder. Over the life of the carbide recycling program, Seco Tools has returned an average of over 10,100 lb (4,100kg) of tools per month for recycling.

Partially in response to the program, this past August Seco Tools was named in Corp! magazine’s list of “Michigan’s Best and Brightest Sustainable Companies” for 2013. The honor reflects the company’s active efforts to support sustainability and minimize its impact on the environment. “We scored particularly high in community outreach and the promotion of sustainable practices,” said Kurt Nordlund, president of Seco Tools North America. “We are committed to sustainability and taking a leadership role on environmental initiatives. That is evident through programs like our Carbide Recycling Program.”

In the program, Seco provides manufacturers with small, medium or large storage containers to place within their facilities. Small 1-pint containers hold approximately 11 lb (5kg) of carbide, medium 1-gallon containers hold approximately 50 lb (23kg), and the large 30-gallon drums accommodate approximately 2,000 lb (910kg). As tools reach the end of their useful life they are placed in the containers, which are then collected by Seco. Any carbide products from any manufacturer can be submitted, including carbide inserts, solid drills, solid end mills, wear parts and PCD/PCBN-tipped inserts. Manufacturers are paid at the market rate when the carbide is returned.

In addition to the environmental benefits of recycling, Seco’s Carbide Recycling Program helps to address the growing global demand for tungsten, which comprises 75% of cemented carbide tools. Up to 95% of the material in a typical carbide insert can be reclaimed, helping to ensure the long-term sustainability of the metal cutting industry. Seco says recycling reduces related energy consumption by 35% and cuts CO2 emissions by 40%. 

Manufacturers interested in participating in the Seco Tools Used Carbide Recycling Program can visit for more information, or contact Vic Bruni at

Source: Seco Tools