What happens to my recycling?

So you've flattened your cardboard boxes and washed and squashed your plastic containers ready for recycling - but what happens to those materials once they are taken away by the collection crews?

Find out how your recyclable materials are processed below:

Dry mixed recycling - blue lidded bin

The recycling materials from your blue-lidded recycling bin are taken to West Northamptonshire Norse’s MRF (Materials Recycling Facility) in Costessey, Norfolk.

Items are sorted, partly by machinery and partly by hand. Once separated, the materials are then baled before they are sent on to various locations for recycling.

Find out what happens to recycling taken to the MRF in this interactive 360 degree video 

You can also find out more in this video:

Food waste

Food waste from your brown caddies is taken to Severn Trent Green Power’s anaerobic digester in Coleshill near Birmingham.

Anaerobic digestion is a safe biological process in which food waste and other organic materials are broken down by micro-organisms in the absence of light and oxygen, to produce renewable energy and a nutrient-rich biofertiliser.

Find out more information about anaerobic digestion

You can also find out more in this video:

Garden waste

Garden waste collected from garden waste collection service subscribers is taken to Envar’s composting facility in Kilsby.

All material is tipped on an open-air concrete pad, before being visually inspected and litter-picked to remove any contamination.

The material is then shred/sized and placed into a formation windrow outdoors. The piles are turned regularly to improve air circulation and help the composting process.

The resulting compost is used a nutrient-rich, peat-free fertiliser with a range of commercial and domestic uses.

You can find out more in the video below, though please note it shows the composting process at an Envar site which deals with both food and garden waste, so the initial process shown differs to that carried out at Kilsby.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Thank you for recycling. Please continue to help by reducing, reusing and recycling as much of you waste as you can.