Kerbside recycling - what goes in my clear sack?

What can I put in my clear sacks?

  • Newspapers, magazines and catalogues including telephone directories and Yellow Pages
  • Paper, junk mail and envelopes
  • Greetings cards & wrapping paper (paper type)
  • Shredded paper
  • Cardboard boxes, cardboard food packaging such as cereal boxes, clean pizza boxes, toilet roll and kitchen roll tubes etc.
  • Foil
  • Food and drink cans and aerosol cans
  • Plastic bottles and plastic packaging
  • Yoghurt pots, margarine tubs and ice cream tubs
  • Plastic food trays, fruit and vegetable punnets and ready meal trays (but NOT the polystyrene ones)
  • Empty plastic carrier bags
  • Beverage cartons

Please make sure items for recycling are clean and free of food traces as any contamination could result in our recycling loads being rejected by the Materials Recycling Facility (MRF).

Where does my recycling go?

Need more recycling sacks? 

Collect more sacks free of charge from your local Library, the Council Office at Causeway House, Braintree or call 0800 074 8243 and we'll deliver them to you within 10 working days.

What does not go in the clear sacks:

  • Food waste and garden waste - please use your food bin, green bin or try home composting
  • Glass bottles and jars - take them to your local bottle bank
  • Clothes and shoes - donate good quality items to charity shops or put them in a carrier bag, tie the top and place it in a textile bank
  • Gas containers, paint tins & metal utensils
  • Polystyrene, plastic film, cling film & bubble wrap
  • Hard plastic items such as toys, video tapes, CD cases, coat hangers, plant pots etc.
  • Crisp packets, biscuit wrappers and foil-type wrapping paper
  • Bubble wrap
  • Wallpaper
  • General refuse
  • Nappies
  • Paint tins
  • Dirty tissues and napkins

Please note that our clear sacks are for clean, sorted materials for RECYCLING ONLY. Do not use them for other purposes such as general refuse or garden waste - they will not be collected.

Recycling Symbols

Recycling symbols on packaging can be very confusing and do not necessarily mean that the product or material can be recycled by our kerbside collection scheme or in our recycling banks. That's why it's so important to make sure you've got our up-to-date information on what you can put in your bins and clear sacks. Check the list at the top of this page for the items we can collect in our clear recycling sacks. If in doubt, please give our Customer Service Centre a call to make sure.

And not all items or packaging will have a recycling label on them but that doesn't mean you can't recycle them! For up to date information on packaging symbols and their meaning please visit the recycle now website.