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Everything you need to know about recycling soft plastic

Plastic bags, chip packets, pasta packaging and cling wrap can all be recycled; here’s how

You separate your paper and cardboard from your cans and plastic, religiously rinse containers and take pride in how well (and how much) you recycle every week. But did you know it’s possible to recycle soft, scrunchable plastic too? According to the War on Waste, the most common recycling mistake is assuming soft plastics such plastic bags, chip packets and biscuit wrappers – essentially anything scrunchable that is used for wrapping everything from packaged foods to clothes and appliances – can be recycled using household recycling bins. They can’t. The next most common mistake is not realising they can be recycled at all. Here’s our guide to recycling soft plastics that will have you well on your way to reducing your household waste (and weekly landfill contribution).

  1. Know your soft plastics – soft plastics include biscuit wrappers, plastic bags, garbage bags, chip packets and salad mix packets – basically anything that acts as a bag around your food is soft plastic. It’s also the plastic dry cleaners use to cover your shirts, the clear plastic wrap that comes with any appliance purchase, it’s used in some shape or form in most packaging used for any type of online shopping. Get the picture? It’s everywhere!
  2. Choose a cupboard, bin, drawer or other convenient location at home to store used soft plastics
  3. Find your closest drop-off point, the easiest way is to visit Redcycle and enter your suburb, these are mostly located at Coles and Woolworths supermarkets. Alternatively contact your local council as some – like our neighbouring council Randwick City Council also offer soft plastic recycling facilities.
  4. Create a drop-off habit – we take ours to our pre-school which has just installed a collection bin, which they in turn take to a drop-off centre – but another easy way is to drop them off at your local drop-off point whenever you do a grocery shop.

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