The state of plastics recycling in the United States
What Every Consumer Should Know about Recycling Plastic Bags and Wraps
Plastic bags and wraps aren’t typically recycled in curbside programs, but they are widely recycled through conveniently located collection bins at grocery and retail stores. Check your local grocer or retailer (e.g., Target, Lowe’s) to see if they collect plastic bags and/or wraps. Most stores provide a bin at the entrance or sometimes at the checkout area. If your program collects bags only, you can recycle any clean, dry plastic carryout bag. If your store collects a wider variety of “plastic film” or “plastic bags and wraps” – as most of them do – you can recycle any of the following: plastic carryout bags and sacks; dry cleaning bags; newspaper bags; bread bags; cereal box liners (the plastic bags that come inside the cardboard box); produce bags; sealable food storage bags (no food residue); shipping envelopes (remove paper labels and stickers); wraps from paper products, (diapers, napkins, paper towels, bathroom tissue, and baby wipes); and case wrap from bulk snacks and beverages. Make sure plastic bags and wraps are clean and dry. NO food residue, paint, adhesive or stickers. To conveniently stow used plastic bags and wraps until your next trip to the store, simply place items inside a plastic bag and tie handles to keep everything neatly contained. When recycled, plastic bags and wraps can be made into new bags and wraps, durable outdoor decks and fences, homebuilding products, and lots of other things.