Unfortunately, take-out food containers are not recyclable with your residential recycling in Franklin County. As a result, these items should NOT be put into your residential recycling bin or drop-off container but should be disposed of with your residential trash. This includes “clam-shell” containers made out of clear plastic or polystyrene (typically a white foam material), and other shapes and sizes of plastic take-out containers.
WHY CAN’T THIS BE RECYCLED?
The types of plastics used in these containers are not accepted at the recycling facility that processes residential recyclables in Franklin County. Due to the different types of plastics used, and the variability in sizes and shapes of these materials, they are difficult to separate at the recycling facility and strong end markets don’t exist even if they are successfully separated.
More people are bringing their own “take-home” containers to restaurants in case they have leftovers at the end of the meal. While not yet as common as people bringing their own reusable bags to grocery stores, there are growing efforts among Franklin County residents to reduce the amount of unrecyclable plastic that they generate. The next time you’re heading out to a restaurant, give it a try!
Terracycle Recycling Program
Terracycle offers a FREE recycling program for all brands of plastic food storage containers including the black takeout food containers. To learn more about the program, click here.