Recycling rules are a lot like navigating public transport on a hangover – confusing, frustrating, and a little bit overwhelming. But we’re here to change that! We’ve laid out what you can and can’t recycle, as well as some general bin rules that may have been lost in translation.
According to Cheshire East Council:
Here’s what you CAN put into your recycling bins:
- • Aerosols (empty and without a lid)
- • Cans (rinsed with labels and lids left on)
- • Cardboard
- • Cartons and fruit or veg punnets
- • Foil (including cleaned aluminium/foil trays)
- • Glass or plastic bottles and jars (rinsed)
- • Junk mail, paper and envelopes
- • Microwave film
- • Plastic bags and polythene
- • Plastic cleaning brushes
- • Plastic drink bottles (rinsed)
- • Plastic toiletry bottles
- • Plastic trays, yoghurt pots and thin plastic tray lids
- • Shredded paper
- • Soup or sauce pots
- • Wrapping paper (without glitter)
Green bin (this can be brown in some areas):
- • Grass cuttings, lawn edgings and weeds
- • Bark, twigs and small branches
- • Plants
- • Leaves
- • Hedge clippings
- • Cut flowers
- • Windfalls from fruit trees
- • Raw or cooked meat and fish (including bones)
- • Fruit, salad, vegetable peelings
- • Tea bags, tea, coffee grounds
- • Egg shells, stale bread and crusts
- • Leftover food from your plates
- • Cat and dog food
- • Hay, straw and wood shavings
Here’s what CANNOT go into your recycling bins:
- Polystyrene and hard plastics
- Tied Bin Bags (Tied carrier bags and bin bags prevent waste from being sorted, so please place all recycling loose in your silver bin)
- Food or garden waste
Green or brown bin:
- Liquid cooking fat, oil
- Wax, waxed packaging, foil
- Coffee filters
- Soil, stone or rubble
- Animal waste
- Paper, plastic, glass, or metals
- Plant pots/containers
- Ash and vacuum cleaner contents
- Pharmaceuticals and cosmetics
- Textiles and feathers
- Household or garden chemicals
Cheshire East Council has really done their homework and has a huge amount of interesting information about recycling. If you’d like to find out more, just head to their website.
Where does it all go?
In Cheshire East, your recycling is taken to UPM’s Materials Recovery facility in Shotton for sorting (but not into Hogwarts houses), and materials that don’t belong are removed. The recycling then goes into another sorting centre which separates everything into individual streams. Up to six grades of plastic can be sorted at UPM, which then means less goes to landfill – woohoo! Once, bailed the recycling is made into new products. According to Cheshire East Council, 99.5% of materials at UPM get recycled and reused – how amazing is that?
Your garden and food waste is taken to a composting plant in Leighton, near Crewe. The waste is treated at a high temperature during the composting process to kill any pathogens. It’s then moved to a maturation area for a few more weeks until it’s ready for agricultural and horticultural use.
If you’d like to learn more about where your recycling goes, just follow the link here.
We hope this helps uncomplicate your local recycling rules and makes it easier to sort through your waste. We know recycling isn’t the answer to the waste crisis, but it’s a step in the right direction. Happy recycling!
*This information is up to date as of 16th March 2022.