Ralf Bohle GmbH (Schwalbe brand) is the first bicycle tire manufacturer in the world to take responsibility and take back and recycle used bicycle tires - turning used tires into new ones.

According to the latest Schwalbe's LinkedIn post, a German bicycle dealer Ingo Ruhland collected end-of-life bicycle tires in the basement below his bike store in Freising for 23 years, hoping that the tires could eventually be recycled instead of incinerated. So he waited for more than 20 years until a sustainable solution was found.

Now the time had come and around 20,000 tires could be fed into the Schwalbe Recycling System. The tires had to be carried out of a former beer cellar and then stacked in a truck container.

Together with Pyrum Innovations AG and the Technical University of Cologne, Schwalbe has developed a recycling process that claims to save 80% of CO₂ emissions. So the tires will be sent to Pyrum Innovations who will granulate the tires and then use a thermolytic process to reduce them to process gas, oil and recovered carbon black to be recycled into new Schwalbe products.

Around 50 dealers were involved when Schwalbe started the test phase of tube recycling programme in January 2022, and by the end of November, there were already more than 1,300.

Article by Schwalbe.