Top 5 things you thought you can’t recycle, but you can!


It’s Recycle Week and this year is all about ‘The Unusual Suspects’. These are items that you might not think you can recycle or might forget about, – how many of The Unusual Suspects are you already recycling?

blue-plate-with-leftover-food-shutterstock1. Food leftovers – if you haven’t got a dog that can eat your food leftovers, don’t put your plate scrapings in your general waste bin! Recycle all of your food waste in your kitchen caddy and put it in your food and garden recycling bin.

Your food and garden waste is turned into Revive Compost 

Top Tip – please don’t use plastic carrier bags in your kitchen caddy, these don’t compost

4844-deodorant2. Aerosols – All types of empty aerosols can be recycled in your mixed recycling bin. So look out for deodorant, shaving foam, air fresheners, fly spray and hair care products. All you have to do is make sure it’s empty, remove the plastic lid, (put this in your general waste bin) and put the aerosol in your mixed recycling bin….easy!

Top tip – Think about having a separate recycling bin in the bathroom to make collecting your recycling easier.

Your aerosol cans with the rest of your mixed recycling is sorted at a Materials Recovery Facility




3. Cardboard cartons – such as juice, milk, soup or tomato cartons, also known as Tetra Paks – all of these can be recycled with your paper and cardboard. Just give them a rinse take off the plastic lid (put this in your general waste bin) and recycle them with your other paper and cardboard.




4844-foil-and-foil-trays4. Foil and foil trays – like kitchen foil and take-away foil trays. Once you’ve eaten your take-away, (and put any leftover food waste in your kitchen caddy), give the trays a quick rinse and put them in your mixed recycling bin along with other aluminium cans and tins.


Top Tip – Not sure if you can recycle some types of foil items? Do the scrunch test…if you can scrunch up the foil and it stays scrunched up, then you can recycle it. Try it with a crisp packet. Although these look like they have foil in them, we can’t recycle it because it’s mainly made of metallised plastic film not foil, so when you scrunch it, it will spring open.

4844-bonesBones – meat bones like chicken, fish, pork or beef etc…Although you might think that you can’t recycle them, as they wouldn’t compost in a garden compost bin, they can be recycled with all of your food and garden waste.




Top Tip – Keep your kitchen caddy somewhere handy so you can collect all your left over food waste, raw and cooked food and anything that’s gone a bit mouldy.  Most people keep it under the sink or on the worktop.

So how many Unusual Suspects do you already recycle?

One?  Hopefully the guide has helped you to identify some of the Unusual Suspects around your home and will help you to recycle more.

More than 3? You’re well on the way to being a Top Class recycler!

All of them? Well done, you’re an expert recycler….share this blog to encourage people to recycle more of The Unusual Suspects.

Look out for our next blog all about the weird…the wonderful and mysterious items that people put into their recycling bins….

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Recycle for Greater Manchester