Strathbogie Shire Council

Tel 24/7: 1800 065 993

Recycle items loose, not in bags

Strathbogie Shire residents have been asked to make an easy – and important − new year’s resolution: stop putting plastic bags in the recycling bin.

Items inside plastic bags is the number one contamination issue in the Shire, a simple mistake also being made by 17 per cent of Victorians.

Strathbogie Shire Mayor Laura Binks urged people to put loose items in the yellow-lid recycling bins for kerbside collection.

“A simple new year’s resolution anyone can make to help reduce contamination is to put their recycling in the bin loose, and not in plastic bags,” Cr Binks said.

“Unfortunately, items in bags can’t be recycled, so we urge individuals, businesses and visitors to keep it all loose so we can make the most of our recycling.”

Cr Binks said some residents and businesses were possibly unaware that items placed in the bin in plastic bags could not be sorted at recycling facilities.

“Despite good intentions, many people don’t realise that plastic bags and their contents are treated as contaminants and sent to landfill.

“However, everyone can make a difference to recycling by simply putting accepted recyclables in the bin loose.”

Contamination occurs when items that cannot be recycled (for example, plastic bags) are placed in the recycling bin. These non-recyclable items, also called contaminants, can prevent recycling from being processed and turned into new things.

Plastic bags can get caught in the sorting machines and damage equipment.

Recycling in bags also presents a health and safety risk to staff who sort recycling as the contents of the bag are not visible and may include sharp objects.

Tip: Collect together, bin loose

Keep your recycling out of plastic bags and instead, collect your recyclables in a basket, plastic tub or even a cardboard box.

Once full, tip the contents into your recycling bin so that all items go in separately, and if not reusing the cardboard box, flatten it and put in the bin.

“By making a new year’s resolution to always put recycling in the bin loose, you can help make the most of our recycling and create a more sustainable future,” Cr Binks said.

For more information and recycling tips, visit



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