Recycle more plastic, more often
Recycling plastic helps protect our environment. Most people do it. Do you?
Every council in Northern Ireland provides a kerbside recycling collection for plastic bottles and plastic packaging.
Find out how you can recycle even more plastic.
The types of plastic bottles you can and can’t recycle
Plastic bottle recycling - five top tips
- Leave caps and lids on.
- Squash bottles to save space.
- Empty and rinse bottles.
- Triggers can be left on when recycling cleaning product bottles such as bathroom cleaners.
- Soap bottle pumps need to be removed and disposed of in the rubbish bin.
Don’t forget to recycle items from all rooms in the house such as shampoo bottles from the bathroom.
The types of plastic packaging you can and can’t recycle
Plastic packaging recycling - five top tips
- Rinse food packaging.
- Labels and solid plastic lids can all be left on.
- Remove any film lids and absorbent pads from plastic trays and put these in the general rubbish.
- Use leftover washing up water to rinse your plastic pots and tubs before recycling.
- Black plastic can be put out as part of your kerbside recycling collection.
To find out more about your local plastics recycling collection enter your postcode into our Recycling Locator tool.
On Pack Recycling Labels
Packaging labels and recycling symbols appear on lots of everyday items, and help us to identify how different types of packaging can be recycled.
The labels help explain whether the packaging is likely to be collected for recycling or if consumers can take it to local recycling centres.
Plastics recycling know how videos!
How to recycle:
Your top plastic questions answered!
How are plastics recycled?
Plastics are sorted by polymer type, shredded, washed, melted, pelletised, and made into new products. It is a two-stage process:
- Sorting is mainly done automatically with a manual sort to ensure all contaminants have been removed.
- Once sorted and cleaned, plastic can either be shredded into flakes or melt processed to form pellets before finally being moulded into new products.
Can I recycle plastic bags?
Plastic bags cannot be recycled through the kerbside recycling collection services. However, some local supermarkets have recycling collection points in store.
|Can I recycle cling film?||Cling film is not recyclable and should be placed in the waste bin.|
|Can I recycle disposable coffee cups?||Paper-based cups are usually lined with a membrane of polyethylene (plastic) to make them waterproof, but it means they are not recyclable alongside paper or cardboard, or biodegradable. Invest in a reusable cup instead?|
|What is single use plastic?||Single-use plastics, or disposable plastics, are used only once before they are thrown away or recycled. These items are things like plastic bags, straws, coffee cups, coffee stirrers, fizzy drink and water bottles and most food packaging.|
|What should I do with black plastic packaging trays?||These can be recycled through your kerbside recycling collection service. When plastic packaging goes into the recycling it is sorted into different types of plastics which are then baled up ready for reprocessing. Special laser technology is used to do this sorting. Black plastic packaging is separated out from other plastic packaging.|