Most packaging and printed paper can be collected curbside or can be taken to depots for recycling. A few items are only accepted at depots.

Search for material using Recycle BC’s Waste Wizard, or scroll down to view a summary of accepted materials and where to take them.

RECYCLE BC ACCEPTED MATERIALS

Printed Paper

Printed paper is recycled into new paper products, boxboard, the paper cover for drywall, moulded paper egg cartons and insulation.

Download a full list of materials in English, Chinese, Punjabi or Korean.

 Accepted Materials
  • Newspapers, inserts and flyers
  • Magazines and catalogues
  • Telephone books and other directories
  • Writing and home office paper, paper envelopes, and notepads
  • Paper gift wrap and greeting cards
  • Shredded paper
 Where Accepted
 Not Accepted
  • Hardcover or paperback books (donate or sell)
  • Non-paper gift wrap, e.g. foil gift wrap
  • Ribbons or bows
  • Musical greeting cards with batteries (contact the Recycling Council of BC for battery and e-waste recycling options
  • Rubber bands
  • Padded envelopes
  • Plastic bags used to cover newspapers/flyers (recycle at a Recycle BC depot)

PAPER PACKAGING FOR DRY GOODS

Paper packaging is recycled into new boxes, paper towels, tissues, paper-based plant pots, the paper cover for drywall liner, kraft paper, brown paper products including paper towels.

Download a full list of materials in English, Chinese, Punjabi or Korean.

 Accepted Materials
  • Corrugated cardboard boxes used for shipping, grocery and liquor store boxes and pizza boxes
  • Cardboard and boxboard boxes used for cereal, shoes, tissues, pizza, frozen entrees, desserts, detergent, etc.
  • Carrier trays for bulk bottled water, soft drinks, cans, food, etc.
  • Cores for paper towels and toilet tissue
  • Moulded boxboard packaging for egg cartons, take-out beverage trays, paper-based plant pots
  • Paper bags (also called kraft paper) and envelopes
  • Paper bags with single or multiple paper layers for pet food, flour, etc.
 Where Accepted
 Not Accepted
  • Cardboard boxes with wax coating, such as empty boxes, made available for residents to transport their groceries home
  • Padded envelopes
  • Foil-lined boxes or bags
  • Paper bags with multiple layers that include a foil layer
  • Paper towels, napkins (include with green waste, if applicable)
  • Tissues

CARTONS AND PAPER CUPS

Paper packaging is recycled into new boxes, paper towels, tissues, paper-based plant pots, the paper cover for drywall liner, kraft paper, brown paper products including paper towels.

Download a full list of materials in English, Chinese, Punjabi or Korean.

 Accepted Materials
  • Paper cups for hot and cold beverages
  • Cartons and boxes for milk, milk-type beverages, cream, substitute eggs, broth, sauces, etc.
  • Frozen dessert boxes for ice cream, frozen yogurt, etc.
 Where Accepted
 Not Accepted
  • Juice cartons and boxes (return to depot for deposit refund)
  • Straws
  • Stand up pouches

PLASTIC CONTAINERS

 

Plastic is recycled into new packaging, fleece clothing, broadloom, rope, brush bristles, car bumpers, household furnishings, decking, picnic tables, deck chairs and gardening supplies.

Download a full list of materials in English, Chinese, Punjabi or Korean.

 Accepted Materials
  • Plastic jugs with screw tops used for milk, cooking oil, laundry detergent and fabric softener, cleaning solutions, cleaning products, body care products, windshield washer fluid, etc.
  • Plastic bottles with screw caps, spray pump, or pull-up tops for food, dish soap, mouthwash, shampoos, conditioners and other personal care products, pills and vitamins, ho and automotive cleaners, laundry products, etc.
  • Plastic jars with wide mouths and screw-top lids for peanut butter, jam, nuts, condiments, vitamins and supplements, personal care products, etc.
  • Plastic clamshells with hinged or click-closed tops for baked goods, fruit, produce, eggs, etc.
  • Plastic back-bottom trays and clear tops for deli chicken, single-serve meals, prepared foods, baked goods, housewares, and hardware such as screws or picture hangers, etc.
  • Plastic tubs and lids for food such as margarine and spreads, dairy products such as yogurt, cottage cheese, sour cream, ice cream, etc.
  • Plastic cold drink cups with lids for take-out beverages
  • Plastic garden pots and trays for bedding plants, seedlings, vegetable plants, etc.
  • Plastic pails less than 25L for laundry detergent, ice cream, pet food, etc.
  • Microwavable bowls and cups
  • Empty single-use coffee and tea pods; remove lids and do not include lids with recycling
  • Rigid plastic packaging for toys, toothbrushes, batteries, etc; remove paper backing and recycle separately
WHERE ACCEPTED
 Not Accepted
  • Beverage bottles or jugs for flavoured tea, juice, or other beverages (return to depot for deposit refund)
  • Stand-up pouches
  • Containers for motor oil, vehicle lubricant or antifreeze products (call the RCBC Hotline 1-800-667-4321 or check Recyclepedia)
  • Packaging labelled biodegradable or compostable
  • Liquid-absorbing pads, e.g., in trays of meat, poultry, fish, etc.
  • Plastic wrap
  • Shrink wrap for meat, poultry, fish or cheese
  • Plastic blister packs e.g. plastic/foil protective packaging for chewing gum and pills
  • Ceramic plant pots
  • Lawn edging, tarps, plastic furniture or toys
  • Garden hoses
  • Plastic string or rope
  • Plastic paint cans (call the RCBC Hotline 1-800-667-4321 or check Recyclepedia)
  • Pails larger than 25L
  • Pails for lubricants and oils (call the RCBC Hotline 1-800-667-4321 or check Recyclepedia)
  • Microwavable bowls with metal rims
  • Plastic or foil lids from coffee and tea pods

Aluminum Containers

Aluminum is recycled into new aluminum containers, road signs and window frames.

Download a full list of materials in English, Chinese, Punjabi or Korean.

 Accepted Materials
  • Aluminum cans and lids used for food, lubricating oil, etc.
  • Aluminum foil wrap and foil take-out containers, including pie plates, food trays, etc.
  • Empty aluminum aerosol containers used for food, air fresheners, shaving cream, deodorant, hairspray, foam insulation, etc.
 Where Accepted
 Not Accepted
  • Spray paint cans (call the RCBC Hotline 1-800-667-4321 or check Recyclepedia)
  • Aerosol cans with any contents remaining
  • Propane cylinders (call the RCBC Hotline 1-800-667-4321 or check Recyclepedia)
  • Foil-lined cardboard take-out containers and lids
  • Aluminum beverage containers (return to depot for deposit refund)

Steel Containers

Aluminum is recycled into new aluminum containers, road signs and window frames.

Download a full list of materials in English, Chinese, Punjabi or Korean.

 Accepted Materials
  • For food including pet food; tins for cookies, tea, chocolates, etc.; includes metal lid
  • Empty and rinse cans. Labels are OK
  • Remove lids, drop into can and squeeze slightly
 Where Accepted
 Not Accepted
  • Steel beverage cans (return for deposit refund)
  • Steel paint cans
  • Coat hangers (return to dry cleaners)
  • Pots, pans and baking trays
  • Propane cylinders
  • Metal toys
  • Appliances
  • Metal hardware or other scrap metal
  • Wiring or metal cords, extension cords

Glass Containers

Glass bottles and jars are recycled into new glass containers, fiberglass insulation, paint for reflective signs, sand blast media and construction aggregate.

Download a full list of materials in English, Chinese, Punjabi or Korean.

 Accepted Materials
  • Clear or coloured non-deposit glass bottles and jars. Check with your recycling collector for instructions.
 Where Accepted
  • Separately in curbside collection – confirm with your recycling collector
  • Separately in multi-family collection – confirm with your recycling collector
 Not Accepted
  • Deposit glass (return to depot for deposit refund)
  • Drinking glasses or dishes, cookware
  • Whole or broken window glass or mirrors
  • Ceramic products
  • Light bulbs and light fixtures

Plastic Bags and Overwrap

Plastic bags are recycled into new grocery bags, plastic pallets, containers, crates, pipes, decking and park benches.

Download a full list of materials in English, Chinese, Punjabi or Korean.

 Accepted Materials
  • Bags for groceries or dry cleaning, bread, newspapers and flyers
  • Bags for produce, dry bulk foods and frozen vegetables
  • Outer bags and wrap for diapers, feminine hygiene products, paper towels, tissues and soft drink can flats
  • Bags for water softener salt and garden products
  • Overwrap on mattresses, furniture and electronic equipment
 Where Accepted
 Not Accepted
  • Stand up pouches
  • Crinkly cellophane wrap for tea, floral arrangements, etc.
  • Kitchen stretch wrap
  • Chip or snack bags
  • Zipper-lock bags
  • Plastic shipping envelopes or bubble packaging
  • Packaging labelled biodegradable or compostable
  • Soft packaging for perishable goods, e.g. bacon, deli meats, cheese slices, etc.
  • Lumber or construction wrap
  • Garbage bags (all colours)
  • Any bag sold as a product

Foam Packaging

White and Coloured

Plastic foam packaging is recycled into picture frames, construction trim, moulding, park benches and fence posts.

Download a full list of materials in English, Chinese, Punjabi or Korean.

 Accepted Materials
  • Plastic foam containers and trays used for meat and produce
  • Foam egg cartons
  • Foam clamshells, cups and bowls for take-out food
  • Foam cushion packaging to protect electronics, small appliances, etc.
 Where Accepted
 Not Accepted
  • Liquid-absorbing pads used in trays for meat, poultry, fish, etc.
  • Shrink wrap for meat, poultry, fish or cheese
  • Labels, tape, paper and cardboard on foam packaging
  • Foam peanuts, packing chips, or noodles
  • Blue or pink foam board insulation
  • Napkins, cutlery
  • Squishy or flexible foam
  • Furniture cushions

 

You can also us the following links to download printable versions: