The Recycling Association advises “if in doubt, throw it out” when recycling at home


If in doubt, throw it out when recycling at home says the UK recycling industry.

The Recycling Association is providing this simple advice because the public are often unsure whether household items are recyclable or not. 


Packaging is becoming increasingly complex, while local authorities can have completely different collection schemes compared to neighbouring ones adding to the confusion.

But The Recycling Association is saying that you should always recycle clean, single material plastics, paper, metal cans and glass in your recycling bin.

If an item of packaging is made of multiple materials and you aren’t sure whether it can be recycled or not, it is better to put it into your general waste bin than your recycling bin.

This is because almost one fifth of the material collected for recycling from households is material that cannot currently be recycled.

The Recycling Association chief executive Simon Ellin said: “We have thought for a while that the public are increasingly confused when looking at packaging items whether they can be recycled or not.

“Some people may think they should put it in the recycling just in case it can be recycled and do the right thing. But often, this can lead to more contamination of the materials that can genuinely be recycled.

“So our advice to people is If in doubt, throw it out as that is better than putting the wrong items in the recycling bin.”

The Recycling Association will be at the REB Recycling End Markets Conference on the 13th Decemeber discussing the China situation and why quality must come first. 
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