1. Home Brother
  2. Support
  3. Brother Answers Articles
  4. Where to Recycle Your Printer Cartridges
printer ink cartridges

Where to recycle your printer cartridges

When a printer cartridge runs out of ink or toner, many people simply throw these away without realising that printer cartridges can be recycled for their usable parts. Thankfully the environmentally conscious among you will be pleased to hear how easy it can be to take these steps to limit your impact. Including recycling your printer cartridges once they're empty.

The importance of recycling your printer cartridges

Every year millions of ink and toner cartridges are thrown away, rather than recycled. All of these discarded cartridges contribute to filling landfills, adding pollutants and toxins to the environment. 

In the UK alone, an estimated 45 million ink and toner cartridges end up in landfill – naturally this number increases enormously when looking at the wider world. With each ink and toner cartridge taking approximately 1000 years to fully decompose, that huge number isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. 

With the size and number of landfills increasing at an ever-alarming rate, with more and more pollutants building up in the environment, it’s important to limit our printing waste and recycle where possible. Fortunately, when it comes to ink and toner cartridges, you have options to recycle. 

Recycling your cartridges

Printer manufacturers now allow you to send off your old ink and toner cartridges to be recycled once they’re empty. So instead of throwing them in the bin and contributing to the landfill crisis, you should be able to box up your empty printer cartridges and send them back to your manufacturer, who will then recycle them for you

Almost all of your genuine ink and toner cartridges, up to 97% in fact, can be recycled, so there’s no reason not to recycle them. Not only does this limit waste considerably, it also cuts down the cost, both financial and environmental, of manufacturing new ink and toner cartridges. So, this ultimately means the cost of ink and toner cartridges can be kept reasonable for you later down the line. 

Brother recycling programme

When it comes to limiting your environmental impact through recycling, Brother is ‘At your side’. We take our commitment to the environment seriously, so we’re here to help making recycling your ink and toner cartridges easy.

If you’ve purchased a Brother Genuine ink or toner cartridge, you can send them over to us to be recycled completely free of charge. We’re committed to ensuring that absolutely nothing goes to landfill – anything we can’t re-use as it is will be recycled for parts and put towards manufacturing new products.

What’s more, businesses and organisations can automate this process by switching to a Brother managed print service.

How to recycle your empty Brother ink and toner cartridges

When you’re ready to recycle your used Brother Genuine ink and toner cartridges, all you need to do is follow four simple steps. 

  1. Head over to our website and find the ink recycling form or toner recycling form. Fill out your home or office details as requested and let us know how many cartridges you’d like to return.

  2. Brother will send you a pre-labelled envelope or box, depending on how many used ink or toner cartridges you need to send us. Or, if you only have a handful of toner cartridges to return, you can simply print a postal label for free on our website and send these back in the box they arrived in, by attaching the label.

  3. Fill the envelope or box with your used Brother Genuine ink or toner cartridges, sealing it carefully to ensure they stay boxed up until they reach us.
  4. Head to your local post office and send your used Brother ink or toner cartridges on their way to us, completely free of charge. Or, if you’re sending back more than 12 toner cartridges at a time, simply let us know when you’ve filled your recycling box, and we’ll come and collect it from you. 

    It’s that easy to recycle your Brother Genuine ink and toner cartridges once you’re done with them. So if you want to do your bit for the environment, just let us know when you’re finished with your ink and toner cartridges, and we’ll send over what you need to recycle them. 

Looking after the environment with Brother 

At Brother we are always taking steps to limit our impact on the environment. We want to work with our customers towards a better planet, reducing our negative impacts on it in every area of business. Our goal is to help tackle major issues such as the growing landfill crisis. 

Through our environmental work, Brother was awarded an “Eco-first company” by the Ministry of Environment in 2012, making us the first company in the printer industry to receive the title.

Brother printing products are built with longevity in mind. Built-to-last so that you don’t need to make regular investments into your printing, but also to help limit your environmental impact by not purchasing new products as often.


Once you’re finished with a Brother product, just send them back to us. We can then re-use these built-to-last parts towards the manufacture or new products, rather than building them completely from scratch. This promotes a circular economy that helps all of us limit our impact on the environment. If you would like to find out more about recycling your Brother Printer please visit our recycle centre. 

Brother is ‘At your side’, helping you protect the environment and limiting waste sent to landfills through our ink and toner recycling.


Back to top