Top Items to Recycle Consistently
In the Twin Cities metro, everyone gets curbside recycling, but some things are not always accepted for recycling by your hauler. Remember to recycle these items that all haulers take:
- Aluminum and metal food and beverage cans;
- Glass food and beverage bottles and jars;
- Paper (including magazines, newspapers, cardboard and cereal boxes);
- Plastic bottles and jugs (including milk and juice jugs, water and ketchup bottles)
- Cartons (including milk cartons and juice boxes)
Make sure containers are empty and dry before recycling. Sorting methods will make mistakes if liquid or food is left in the container, not to mention the smell and contamination at the recycling center.
Remember to collect recyclables throughout your house; not just in the kitchen! Collect recyclables from the bathroom, laundry room and office as well. You might even be able to save money by downsizing your trash bin.
Put the lids on! One item that has changed about the preparation of recyclables is that you may now leave the lids on the containers and bottles--in fact, you are encouraged to do so!
Keep out contaminants. The chart below lists common contaminants that are found in recycling bins. These items go in the garbage and should not be placed in curbside recycling.
What Can I Recycle?
Confused about which plastics you can now recycle? It is confusing. Generally, most food containers (if you read the recycling numbers they are #1, #2 and #5) are easily recycled. Although #3, #4, #6 and #7 have been collected in the past, they are not easily recycled, so please limit your purchase of them when possible, and just throw these items in the trash if you cannot reuse them in some way. Black plastics are also difficult to recycle, so you can just throw these in the trash if you must get them.
Plastic Bag Recycling
Take plastic bags to one of the many stores that have plastic bag drop-offs, including Cub Foods, Target, Staples, Lunds-Byerlys, and Whole Foods. Many dry cleaners will take their bags. Just ask! Carver County Environmental Services is no longer accepting plastic bags.
Corrugated Cardboard Recycling
Hennepin and Carver County drop-off centers usually take corrugated cardboard for recycling. A free drop-off is available 24/7 at Minnetonka Public Works, 11522 Minnetonka Blvd, Minnetonka. Look for the big blue dumpsters. Please make sure all cardboard is broken down to conserve space.
See links for information on how to dispose of the following hard-to-recycle items:
- Construction & Demolition Waste
- Cooking Oil
- Yard Waste