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elbanditoroso's avatar

What's best for recycling newspaper?

Asked by elbanditoroso (26792points) March 28th, 2016

My county trash pickup people bring around two trucks every week. One is for recycling (paper, glass, plastic, etc.) and the other is for all the other household trash. The county issued me a rectangular plastic bin for recyclable stuff.

I still read newspapers – by the end of the week, it’s a pretty good stack. Usually I just put the newspaper in the bin and the truck comes and picks it up. Recently, so stuff doesn’t blow away in our spring storms, I have been putting the newspapers in a grocery bag – paper if I have one, but more often thin plastic.

Does ‘packaging’ the newspaper make it more difficult for the recyclers? (because then they have to unpackage it). Or is it all automated anyway?

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15 Answers

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Best not to but once the paper makes it to the pulper you would be surprised what trash can be removed from bundles of recycled paper. You would be surprised what is found in paper bundles too

Dutchess_III's avatar

Just say no the thin plastic bags. Yes, those make the sorter’s lives difficult, not due to unpacking it but because those thin bags clog up the sorting machine. When I have left over plastic bags, I store them up until I have enough to take to Walmart. They recycle them.

Putting it in a paper bag is best.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Our recycling is “single stream”. We no longer need to separate out cans, bottles, plastic paper. It all gets mixed in the “Blue box” and the recycling center machines separate the plastic, from the paper, glass, etc. That thin bag is gone in a millisecond. Do whatever is best for the collection of material and prevents papers from escaping and being blown around. .
If you are required to separate your recyclables then don’t use the plastic bags.

Here2_4's avatar

I am inundated with cardboard boxes. Perhaps we can come to an accord?

Dutchess_III's avatar

Flatten them and put them in your recycle bin @Here2_4.

Here’s the scoop on recycling plastic bags, @LuckyGuy. You just can’t. Walmart will take them back, though.

JLeslie's avatar

Next time you’re at the supermarket ask for your items to be put in paper bags. Every market I go to that has plastic still has the choice of paper or plastic. You’ll leave with 2–8 bags most likely, depending on how big you shop. Leave one empty as the place you throw this weeks paper, the rest you can fold up neatly and put away for next week and the week after. Then you can throw the newspapers out inside of the paper bag and they shouldn’t blow away. You can lay the bag down on it’s side inside the recycle box or fold down the top of the bag to help keep the papers inside.

You can use the bag for flattened cereal boxes, junk mail, all the paper you throw.

elbanditoroso's avatar

@JLeslie – I used to do that, but the Krogers near me (Atlanta) no longer do paper. Which is a shame.

JLeslie's avatar

Another reason for me to dislike Kroger. I’m pretty sure my Kroger had them in TN when I lived there, but that’s almost 4 years ago.

Dutchess_III's avatar

The thing I fret about is….do they really recycle the stuff? In the past I just felt so guilty throwing out all of this stuff like jars, empty coffee cans, etc. things that can actually be re-used…..some day. After I’ve built a 50X50 Morton building to store them all in.

Now I just rinse and toss and I’m mostly guilt free. But is that misplaced?

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

There are no chain grocery stores in east tn that still do paper except for possibly whole foods

Dutchess_III's avatar

I guess it depends on where you are. Dillions, here, does paper. I don’t know about the Walmart. I’ll check.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Walmart is plastic only here

elbanditoroso's avatar

@Dutchess_III – interesting. Dillons is owned by Kroger.

JLeslie's avatar

I’m 90% sure we still have a paper option at Publix. I think at the military bases it’s still all paper?

I usually bring my own bags. Insulated bags.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, I’ll double check again!

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