St. Paul electronics recycler Tech Dump expands with Tech Discounts retail store on Vandalia Street – Twin Cities Leave a comment

It’s not everyday that a “dump” run by former inmates invites community residents over for cookies, but the electronics recycler known as Tech Dump has a lot to celebrate, not the least of which is the opening of its new “Tech Discounts” retail store in St. Paul.

On Saturday, residents and employees past and present are welcome to swing by the recycling center’s new retail shop at 860 Vandalia St. and enjoy cookies from Cookie Cart, a St. Paul-based nonprofit, to celebrate Tech Dump’s 10th anniversary. The event, which will take place from 12 to 2 p.m., will feature tours of the recycling facility, a ribbon-cutting and music by DJ Mason Butler.

Tech Dump, which maintains another retail store in Golden Valley, has grown from 48 employees in early 2019 to 73 workers over the course of the pandemic. The company is now one of the largest collectors of e-waste in the state, and has recycled 37 million pounds of electronics since inception. About half of all employees have been previously incarcerated or had serious run-ins with the criminal justice system.

During the pandemic, Tech Dump partnered with Ramsey County on the TechPaks initiative, which distributed refurbished laptops and tech support to workers who had lost their jobs due to COVID. Electronics are collected at its warehouses, during collection events, mail-in or through a pick-up service.

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