Let’s take the guesswork out of recycling

If you’re confused about recycling, you’re not alone! Labels on packaging can be misleading and there is local variation as to what can and can’t be recycled, and how to do it.

Take toothpaste, for example. The cardboard box can be recycled, but the empty toothpaste tube and lid belong in your rubbish bin! Likewise, you can pop empty food tins loose in your mixed recycling bin – but items such as food pouches for babies and pets cannot be recycled at home.

Be a checker, not a guesser

When the wrong things go in the recycling bin, it’s known as ‘wish-cycling’. It’s expensive for local councils to sort out and is very damaging for the environment.

That’s why this month we’re encouraging you to try out the Surrey Recycles search tool which can also be downloaded as a free app. Just search ‘Surrey Recycles’ in your App Store or on Google Play.

You can use the tool to check an item against your postcode and find out instantly if it can be composted, recycled or thrown away. Even if an item can’t be recycled from your home, you might be able to take it to a local recycling bank, reuse shop or supermarket.

While you’re there, you can also play our interactive waste sorting game to test your recycling knowledge.

Waste less, reuse more

Why not reduce your impact on the environment and make small swaps to reusable water bottles, food wraps, make-up remover pads and bamboo toothbrushes? In the long run, you’ll spend less, meaning you save money while helping the planet too.

1 March 2023