Recycling Single-Use Coffee Pods

Did you know that single-use coffee pods are accepted in the Multi-Material BC (MMBC) residential packaging and printed paper recycling program? They can be included with other containers (either in the container stream at depots or in multi-stream collection, or with all recycling in single-stream collection. Read about different streams here), if they are emptied of organic material and the lids are removed. We know that this is not always easy because of the way the pods are constructed, but we do see them in processing facilities, so some dedicated residents are taking these steps.

To make it even easier for residents to empty this packaging before adding it to recycling, some manufacturers are developing new pod formats in which, after use, the organic material separates easily from the packaging. Be sure to let the pods cool and follow the instructions on the packaging, or if you have pods that are not in an easy-to-separate format, be sure to remove the organic material before adding it to your recycling (organic material spoils the recyclability of the pods and other recycling, which is why it’s important to remove it).

Getting manufacturers to think about the end-of-life of their packaging, and ultimately changing packaging so it is easier to recycle is one of the aims of extended producer responsibility programs like MMBC’s.