How Our Recycling Program Works

For those residents that live in an area that hasn't contracted with a waste hauler to provide curbside recycling, the Ashtabula County Solid Waste Management District provides access to recycling via "Drop Off" locations. These front load drop off containers are easily identified by their blue color, and matching infographic decals.

Pay special attention to these decals, as they explain what "can" and "can not" be recycled through the Ashtabula County Solid Waste's recycling system.

While many items are "recyclable", that doesn't mean that they are recyclable/compatible through the Ashtabula County SWMD recycling program. Recyclables are a global commodity, which impacts the quantity and quality that producers need depending on the material. As markets flood, the commodity becomes less valuable, and the quality needed to bring the same price must be better. The District is held to certain standards by the ever more selective end user/commodities market, and deviating from these accepted items puts the recycling program at risk.
An example of correct single stream recycling items.
Tips to Recycle Correctly:
  • It is absolutely imperative that ALL material be received LOOSE (not in bags of any kind). The material is sorted by a combination of hand sorting and machine sorting. The material is pushed onto a conveyor belt, and through different processes ends up sorted with like material. Bags slow this process, drive up costs (which are ultimately put back on solid waste districts), and get tangled in the rollers of the conveyor belts. This video shows a MRF (material recovery facility) process.
  • Items can be commingled (mixed together) in the same container. This simplifies recycling at home.
  • Lightly rinse your food containers. This is mainly to keep down the smell between collections, as well as deters rodents and insects from your recycled containers. It's not necessary to remove labels or caps, as these will be burned off during the manufacturing process.
  • Adding incorrect materials to your load causes contamination, and could cause your entire recycling load to be discarded in the landfill.
Ashtabula Co. Bin Label 2023 for website