What Doesn’t Belong in Recycling
No food or garbage in your recycling.
It is very important that our recycling is clean and free of contamination. See below for more information.
Please note, not all items accepted at the El Cerrito Recycling (Drop-Off) Center are included in the curbside program. Don't put the following items in your recycling cart instead bring them to the Drop-Off Center: batteries, fluorescent tubes & lamps (CFLs), electronics, large pieces of scrap metals, medications, needles & sharps, used cooking oil, non-perishable food for the Food Bank Donation barrel, and clothing / textiles & shoes.
Below are a few of the things that do not belong in your recycling cart.
- NO hardcover books, binders, tissues, towels, paper with plastic coatings (such as photographs or label paper), food-soiled paper, waxed paper, foil-lined paper, or plastic shipping envelopes.
- PLEASE compost egg cartons and other food-soiled paper products such as take-out containers, napkins, pizza boxes, paper cups and plates.
- Drop off hardcover books at the El Cerrito Recycling Center.
- NO window glass, mirrors, crystal, Pyrex, ceramics, light bulbs, or fluorescent tubes / lamps (CFLs). Window glass, mirrors, Pyrex, ceramics can be upcycled or worst case sent to landfill.
- Drop off fluorescent tubes / lamps (CFLs) at the El Cerrito Recycling Center. Proof of residency is required.
- NO Styrofoam™* or other polystyrene (#6 EPS plastic), PVC (#3 plastic), plastic bags or plastic film / wrap / flexible packaging, plastic straws, plastic utensils, and other small (under 2" x 2") plastic items.
- PLEASE NO electronic or computer equipment.
- No clothing or textiles. Donate reusable items, make rags or as a last resort, these items should be dropped off at the Drop-Off Recycling Center.
*Styrofoam™ may also be dropped off at the Drop-Off Recycling Center. Proof of residency required.