Everybody shops. But not everybody realizes how environmentally important it is to shop consciously. To precycle is to make buying choices that support responsible products and packaging, make recycling easier and reduce the amount of garbage you throw away. Precycling is a good way to start squaring your personal behavior with your principles. But don't forget it also sends a signal to manufacturers that responsible products and packaging are good business. The goal is that our behavior can change their behavior. When you precycle, you prevent waste in the first place.
—Gunther Wellenstein, "Precycling: Thinking Beyond The Bin," Lowell Sun (Lowell, Massachusetts), August 14, 2007
If we already have a relatively high conciousness of the need to recycle waste we generate, still we seem hesitant to embrace the notion of seeking out recyclable materials when we shop.
In Berkeley, Martin explains, they call this "precycling" — the intentional buying of products made from or packaged in recyclable materials.
—Jonathan Nicholas, "Creating ways to use garbage again," The Oregonian, June 9, 1989