Plastic containers and packaging


Most plastics are recyclable, but not all can be put in the yellow lid recycling bin. This is because the sorting equipment at the recycling facility can only recognise or process certain types of plastics.  Plastic packaging and containers from the laundry, bathroom and kitchen are generally accepted as long as they pass....

....the CRUSH test!

Rigid plasticyellow-lid-bin_3420692974727986303.png   red-lid-bin_7914170657522956139.jpg   business-recyling-icon_8900839956910438424.png

If you CANNOT crush the plastic item into a ball in your hand, place it in the YELLOW lid recycling bin (ie. all rigid plastics).

Examples of acceptable items include: cake trays, shampoo and detergent bottles, juice bottles, yoghurt containers, plastic take away food containers (not polystyrene), margarine tubs, plastic meat trays, milk containers, soft drink bottles, medicine bottles and inner trays from biscuit packets.

*An exception to this test are the plastic tubes often used in bathroom products such as moisturisers, toothpaste, etc. These contain a mix of plastic types and cannot be put in the yellow lid recycling bin.

Make sure containers are empty.  Giving each plastic item a rinse is a good idea to minimise odours and mess in your yellow lid recycling bin.


Rigid plastic items from the garden or garage, such as plant pots and plastic strapping are not able to be recycled via your yellow lid recycling bin.  These must go in the red lid garbage bin.Three stacks of brown plastic plant pots, and one laying on its side

Please also note that cockroach baits, although they are a rigid plastic, are not a container and have also contained toxic chemicals. They should be put in the red lid garbage bin.

Plastic film and wrappers  red-lid-bin_7914170657522956139.jpg  business-recyling-icon_8030699869234975517.png Logo of redcycle

If you CAN crush the plastic item into a ball in your hand,  place it in the RED lid garbage bin.

Examples of soft plastic items include: plastic film wrap, bubble wrap, chip and biscuit wrappers, bread bags, cereal box inserts, cellophane, plastic shopping bags, plastic strapping, zip lock bags.

Alternatively, soft plastics can be recycled through the REDcycle program. By dropping off soft plastics at your local collection bin, REDcycle uses the material as the resource to produce a huge range of recycled-plastic products, such as outdoor furniture.

A variety of empty soft plastic packets and bags which cannot be recycled.

Bottle tops/lids and bread bag ties  red-lid-bin_7914170657522956139.jpg

Plastic bottle tops can be left on the bottle if the bottle is plastic, then placed in the yellow lid recycling bin. 

If the bottle is made from a different material, remove the top and place the top in the red lid garbage bin (exception for metal lids).

Plastic bottle tops, bread bag ties, coffee capsules and anything else smaller than a business card can cause problems like jamming in the recycling machinery and should not be put in the yellow lid recycling bin. 

Plastic jar lids, being bigger, can be put into the yellow lid recycling bin - separate them from the jar first if the jar is a different material.

A variety of plastic bottle tops and jar lids

Coffee capsules     red-lid-bin_7914170657522956139.jpg business-recyling-icon_8030699869234975517.png

Coffee capsules contain several different types of materials, including plastic, aluminium and organic matter.  Because of this, and their small size, they will be placed in the red lid garbage bin.

Alternatively, recycle certain coffee capsule brands through Terracycle. Gerringong Public School is a registered drop off point for Terracycle.

Nespresso brand coffee capsules can be dropped off at Always Flowers (42 Collins St, Kiama) for recycling