What can and can’t be recycled

August 1st, 2021
Reading time: 1 minutes

The Brightmark editorial team focuses on providing insightful and valuable information to impact the planet positively and create a world without waste. Learn more about our methodology here.

Most mechanical recycling facilities collect plastics #1 and #2, easily recycled through traditional technologies. These empty soda bottles and salad dressing containers can be recycled into new versions or turned into other long-lasting products.

Plastics #3 through #7 are notoriously difficult to recycle because additives included during manufacturing cannot be removed. This challenge is compounded by the fact that there has not historically been a recycling market for these types of plastic.

Thankfully, a breakthrough in recycling technology—advanced plastic recycling or plastics renewal—can accept all types of plastic and transform these raw materials into new products, including fuel, wax, and even other plastics. Although it’s not yet available in many communities nationwide, advanced plastic recycling has vastly expanded the market for used plastics. It is making it easier than ever before for us to Reimagine Waste and respect Earth’s natural resources.


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We’re on a mission to Reimagine Waste. We create circular solutions that solve some of the world’s most pressing waste challenges. Our Make Your Mark page is designed to educate and inform those who seek to get involved by reducing consumption or recycling materials properly. We envision a world without waste, and this is our way of bringing you along with us.

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