Plastic waste sorting

Hard and soft plastic waste must be sorted in the container for plastic. This can be done at home as long as the packaging has not been in contact with chemicals such as paint or strong cleaning agents. These must be handed in at the recycling site.

Both hard and soft plastic must be in the same container. Plastic that has contained drink or food must be scraped as clean as possible before being thrown into the plastic container. In some cases, it may be necessary to rinse the container with a little water. Milk and juice cartons must also be sorted in the plastic container.

Examples of hard and soft plastic

Soft plastic

  • Food packaging
  • Carrier bags and bubble wrap
  • The wrapping from toilet paper

Hard plastic

  • Meat trays
  • Packaging from e.g. hand soap, roll-on deodorant, drinking yoghurt and ketchup bottles
  • Plastic toys (minus batteries)

There are certain plastic items that must not be thrown in the plastic container, but must instead be handed in at the recycling site. This applies, among other things:

  • PVC plastic
  • Unhygienic plastic, e.g. toilet brushes and toothbrushes
  • Packaging from chemicals and paint
  • Make-up

The reason why we have to sort waste different types of plastic is that the plastic can be reused as long as it is sorted correctly in the right containers. Plastic is made from oil, and it takes a lot of energy to produce new plastic. When the plastic is recycled, it is melted down into new products, and if there is excess plastic, this is converted into electricity and district heating. By recycling one kilo of plastic, the environment is saved one and a half kilos of CO2.

"Waste sorting can vary from municipality to municipality, so if you are in doubt about how to dispose of your waste in your particular municipality, you can always ask at the local recycling station."