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Acceptable Items for Recycling

Sustainability starts at home. As the recycling leader, Rumpke offers residential customers a convenient, comprehensive recycling program.

All items should be empty, clean and placed loose in recycling containers. Do not place items in plastic bags. There is no need to remove labels. You can mix all items together – no separation is required.

Rumpke Acceptable Recycling Items For Residential Customers

Acceptable Items

Acceptable materials may vary slightly in some locations, residents can typically recycle the following:
  • Glass bottles & jars (all colors)
  • Steel cans
  • Aluminum cans and cups 
  • Plastic bottles (empty, crush, reattach lid): Bottles and jugs that have a small mouth and wider base, such as milk jugs, soda bottles, laundry detergent bottles, water bottles, shampoo bottles and contact solution bottles
  • Plastic tubs*: Containers for butter, sour cream, cottage cheese, yogurt, Jello, and fruit slices would fall into the tub category. Plastic lids should be reattached prior to recycling, film or foil lids should be discarded
  • Plastic Cups* (remove/discard straw, reattach lid): Fast food beverage cups – colored party cups are not accepted
  • Paper: newspaper, magazines, cardboard, mixed office paper and envelopes, paperboard (cereal boxes), pizza boxes free of food debris and grease, telephone books, and catalogs
  • Paper cups (remove/discard lids, straws, and stoppers): Fast food beverage cups, coffee cups, Dixie cups
  • Cartons (remove plastic caps and straws): Food and beverage cartons, such as milk, juice, soup, wine, broth, and other cartons

Unacceptable Items

Items not listed on the acceptable items list should not be placed in recycling containers, including:

  • Hazardous Waste
  • Batteries
  • Electronics
  • Yard waste
  • Plastic bags
  • Cassette & VHS tapes
  • Textiles including clothing and bed sheets
  • Hangers
  • Metal chains
  • Garden hoses
  • Medical sharps or needles of any kind
  • Polystyrene foam
  • Buckets
  • Car parts
  • Food
  • Light bulbs
  • Drinking glasses, ceramics,
    Pots, pans, and scrap metal

*No cups or tubs are currently accepted in Central Kentucky, where Rumpke partners with Lexington Fayette Urban County Government to process recyclables. See more on plastic recycling.

Recycling Tips

  • Items should be empty and clean and placed in recycling containers loose.
  • Mix all items together – no separation required.
  • No need to remove labels.
  • For plastic bottles, empty, crush and reattach lids.



  • For cartons, remove plastic caps and straws.
  • NEVER place medical sharps or needles in the recycling.
  • DON’T place items in plastic bags.
  • NEVER place batteries in recycling.

Learn More

Download Our Flyer

Click below and get a downloadable version of our list of acceptable items!

What Happens to Your Recyclables?

Check out our videos below and see what happens to your recyclable items once we pick them up!