If you make a conscious help to our planet by recycling, you may be surprised to learn that some items – which we might expect to recycle – can’t actually be recycled. To properly assist our planet and the people who work at recycling centres and landfill sites, it’s essential that we remind ourselves of correct recycling etiquette. In this week’s blog, we share five surprising things you can’t recycle.
1) Pizza Boxes
The first item on our list is pizza boxes. Although it is tempting to want to recycle your cardboard pizza box, there is often food and grease stuck to it. This is problematic as many items are recycled using a heat and water process. If oil is present, this can create several issues such as ruining the quality of paper and contaminating it.
2) Wet paper
While dry paper is a definite go-ahead for the recycling bin, wet paper is shorter. This makes it less valuable to paper recyclers who won’t collect and mill them.
3) Plastic bags
We all know we should use recyclable bags when grocery shopping. However, sometimes you forget and have to resort to a plastic bag or two. Unfortunately, when recycling bins are sorted manually, workers can’t open plastic bags to see what’s inside them as it’s costly and potentially dangerous. Plastic bags therefore end up being thrown out. The best thing to do is use them to carry and store other items in your home and make a diligent effort to use recyclable bags whenever possible.
Ready to part ways with your old coffee mug? You’ll have to find another home for it because most recycling centres don’t accept ceramics. Try using it in your garden to hold a plant or give it to a local op-shop.
5) Heavily-dyed paper
The last item that can’t be recycled is heavily-dyed paper. When something is heavily dyed, it has the same outcome as a blue shirt or red sock with whites in your washing machine. Due to this, most paper mills won’t accept heavily-dyed paper.
Luckily, there are lots of things you can recycle. This includes all kinds of metal. At Metal Men Recycling, we provide cash for scrap metal. To help the planet and your wallet, please contact us at 03 5941 6677.