Recycling …the weird…the wonderful and ….what’s that?!?

It’s Recycle Week, so we thought we would pay a visit to the Materials Recovery Facility where all the mixed recycling from all the houses in Greater Manchester gets sorted-  however amongst all the right recycling we uncovered wrong (and weird) stuff too…


Around 300,000 tonnes of stuff from your mixed recycling bins is delivered to the MRF every day!

There should only be:

  • Drink and food cans
  • Aerosol cans
  • Plastic bottles
  • Glass bottles and jars
  • Aluminium foil and food trays


However, there are some over-zealous recyclers or some bin misusers who put the wrong stuff in the wrong bin so not everything that arrives at the MRF can be recycled.

These are just some of the items we picked out today at the MRF’s arrival hall where everything gets tipped out from the collection vehicles.


Electronics of any type, small or large shouldn’t go in your recycling bin,   Take them to your Recycling Centre – or why not try repairing  them? Stitched Up run a monthly repair café





Baby Bath Seat

Yes, they are all plastic, but they shouldn’t go in your recycling bin. We only recycle plastic bottles

If you have any other plastic put them in your general rubbish or waste bin.  Or perhaps that baby bath seat could have gone to a charity shop!


Pooh Bear

These poor toys have seen better days but they shouldn’t have ended up in the recycling bin if they were in good condition they could have been donated or otherwise they should go in your general rubbish bin.





Heres a bag, pillow and a t-shirt-  no textiles should go in any of your bins at home. Clothes and textiles can go to a charity shop or if they are too worn or torn they can go to the Recycling Centre.   Things like pillows and duvets can be donated to Dogs homes.



Sauce Pansimgp1688

Pots and Pans and other kitchenware whether its metal or plastic should not go in your recycling bin – put them in your general rubbish bin. Or take them to the Recycling Centre they can go in with scrap metal.





Unusual items We also found this item… this was a bit of a head-scratcher, we had no idea what it was. After much deliberation we found an opening and inside were the instructions!  Its an ice-cream ball!   (Yes you read it right).





 In all seriousness, contamination is a big issue.  If any of the items above get into the MRF it can cause blockages and even cause damage. It also affects the quality of the recycling that is sent for reprocessing.

So, remember in Greater Manchester, the only recycling you can put in your mixed recycling bin is:

  • Drink and food cans
  • Aerosol cans
  • Plastic bottles
  • Glass bottles and jars
  • Aluminium foil and food trays

For more information visit,  the Recycle Week page on our website.

Get involved… join us on Facebook and Twitter for a packed week of facts, hint and tips. #RecycleWeek

Recycle for Greater Manchester