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We all get recycling – let’s make sure we get it right

Oxford City Council and ODS are supporting National Recycle Week, which runs from 17 until 23 October.

The initiative, run by climate action organisation WRAP, aims to help people improve their recycling behaviour and raise awareness of waste reduction principles.

Now in its 19th year, Recycle Week is a celebration of recycling across the nation that encourages the public into recycling more of the right things, more often.

This year's theme is “Let's Get Real about Recycling” and it focuses on challenging perceptions and myths about recycling as well as reducing contaminated recycling.

We appreciate that some packaging and labelling can cause confusion. Recycle Week is a good time to remind Oxford residents of the dos and don’ts of recycling in the city so that everyone can be sure they are putting the right materials in the right bin. The more we get right, the more effective recycling becomes.

Putting the wrong items in your recycling bin can spoil or contaminate the good recycling and lead to costly impacts to the quality and value of these materials. Some of the common items we get questions about are:

  • food waste – leave out the leftovers like pizza or beans in a can. Food waste is messy and can easily spoil your recycling

  • tissues or wet towels - these can’t be recycled. Only the tissue boxes or cardboard sleeve can

  • black bags – these cannot be recycled and please do not put your recycling in a bag we need items rinsed, squashed and loose please

  • drinking glasses - whilst all glass bottles and jars can be recycled, glasses such as those for wine or beer, or any other glass, can’t be recycled in your kerbside collection.

If you are unsure about what items go in your recycling bin please check. It’s also very important that recycling is Clean – free from food waste/ rinsed, Dry – no wet paper/card items and Loose – do not place recyclable items into plastic bags.

For more information check the City Council’s recycling and waste webpage, and Waste Wizard pages, as well as the social media channels InstagramFacebook, and Twitter.


“Every piece of material we produce and use impacts on our climate, so the more material we recycle correctly, the more we can reduce the impact.

“Recycling is already a widespread practice in households across Oxford. As a city, we get recycling. We understand its importance. But during Recycle Week we can all take a moment to check we are doing it right and not accidently contaminating perfectly good recyclable items.”
Councillor Nigel Chapman, Cabinet Member for Citizen Focused Services

Latest recycling figures for Oxford show a rate of almost 52 per cent, but national targets are aiming to achieve 65 per cent by 2035. Please help Oxford to achieve this. Reduce, reuse and recycle.

For more on the Recycle Week visit the WRAP website.