Category Archives: Recycle, Reuse, Repurpose

What bags can I recycle?

I was looking at all the things I have from the store that come enclosed in plastic or wrapped in plastic or in a plastic bag.  What gets  put in the recycle bin?  What has to go back to the store?  What doesn’t get recycled?   So many questions.  So I went to the NYS Dept. of Environmental Protection to see what guidelines were there and this is what I found:

Acceptable Film Plastics for Return to Retail Film Plastic Recycling

Note: All materials must be CLEAN and dry and ALL food residue should be removed. Receipts should also be removed.

The law requires that stores collect film plastics, which include:

  • grocery bags
  • garment bags
  • retail bags with string ties removed
  • newspaper bags
  • dry cleaning bags
  • produce bags
  • bread bags
  • cereal bags (but if it tears like paper, do not include it)
  • over wrap from paper products (paper towels, toilet paper, etc)
  • stretch/shrink wrap
  • zip top food storage bags
  • bubble wrap
  • air pillows found inside shipping packages (must be deflated)
  • shipping envelopes (must be all film plastic, labels removed)
  • furniture and electronic wrap
  • any film packaging or bag with the “How2Recycle” label indicating that it is plastic film and can be returned to store drop off

Now to find out just where to bring all these “acceptable plastics”.    Because judging from the above list,  I will have quite a bit.   Of course, there is always the option of making plarn from the bags.  You can find out about what plarn is here.

Now, the hard plastic containers are a horse of a different color and I am still trying to figure out if I am disposing of those correctly.

Remember, March 1 is the day the new regulations take effect so keep those reusable bags in your car.    Or you can just reuse the plastic bags you have already accumulated from previous shopping trips.     I am curious to see how many stores actually follow the new regs.

I’m off to check out a few more patterns for shopping bags.

Bye for now.  See you soon.

Ginny