(don’t) Collect Pop Tabs

ADPi has some kind of campaign going to collect those tabs on the top of beverage cans.  I’m sure it’s “for a good cause,” but I have to inject my opinion here and say that collecting tabs has to be one of the least efficient methods of raising funds for a good cause.  According to this article (accuracy of the numbers cannot be confirmed, but it also shows how many people really love collecting pop tabs), it takes 1267 tabs to make one pound of aluminum, which can be sold for about 40 cents.

Math people, math:  if those numbers are right, this means each tab is worth approximately 0.03 cents and that it would take about 32 of them to make 1 cent.  Generously assuming that frat pledges can continuously process the cans from last night’s big party at 1 can per second (pick up can, remove tab, place tab in container, discard can), this makes about 2 cents per minute, which makes less than $1.20/hour.  How can that be worthwhile?  Even at that rate, there are a limited number of cans, so assuming they drank 1000 beers at the party (c’mon guys, this is for charity), that’s still less than 32 cents total!  Just have each frat guy give 10 bucks.  Unless someone can come up with an alternate explanation as to how this works, I would encourage you to NOT waste your time on collecting pop tabs.  Sorry ADPi :(  If you are really gung-ho about charity, just drop a dollar or two in a Ronald McDonald House Charity box and know that you will have done far more work than collecting a few thousand tabs.  Okay, rant over.


Meanwhile, the DoDeutsch painting is still up on the west side, while their Luftballons are flying high over the Amphitheater:


2 responses to “(don’t) Collect Pop Tabs

  1. Hey! I don’t want to start a debate, but please hear me out. the Ronald McDonald house on 9th Street in c’ville collects all these pop-tabs. And while it certainly may not be efficient (definitely not arguing your math) I’ve seen the amount of pop-tabs they accrue first-hand, and let me tell you, not only is it impressive, but they take home a good chunk of change from it! When you break it down it may not seem like a lot, but stop by RMH sometime (the staff there are really friendly!) and you’ll see every .03 cents counts! So, I hope you use your blog to encourage people to support the good works of RMH with every poptab they can find (and also help ADPi find more efficient ways of contributing in ADDITION to poptabs)

  2. I agree with Liz, have you ever tried to get money from frat guys? it’s nearly impossible! But anything to encourage drinking will instantaneously become a success! Though I agree pop tabs may not be the best use of time (especially for anyone that has to count them!), people are more likely to contribute something that they would normally throw away than something that they actually think they have use for.

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