Thursday, October 2, 2014

Should I Remove Labels From Cans Or Bottles Before Recycling Them?

Recycling used to come with a lot of rules and restrictions making it somewhat inconvenient, although still worthwhile. Along with other mandated "Recycling Do's", labels used to have to be removed from cans, bottles, and jars. Today's more sophisticated recycling processes for plastic aluminum, and metal are designed to be effective, with or without labels.

It was once necessary to remove paper labels before the recycling process since they can cause flash fires in the furnace when recycling, posing a hazard to employees. It also produces impurities in the end product. Some recycling centers offer to remove the labels at the recycling plant, but this service is more rare and most times not necessary.
There is no need to waste water and energy struggling with stubborn, gummy labels. They will be burned off during the recycling process. The heat applied during the glass, metal, and plastic recycling processes removes labels and their adhesives, plus other contaminants like food residue.

There are still reasons why grease and food residue should be kept out of your recycling bin. While food residue gets burned away during the recycling process for plastic, glass, and metal, the same can not be said for paper. Refer to the blog on pizza box recycling for more information on food and grease contaminants in the paper recycling process.

For more information on recyclable items and processes visit


  1. Your post is just outstanding! thanks for such a post,its really going great and great work Tin Food Cans

  2. The local recycling center here does not like food residues left on cans, etc., because it attracts rats to the recycling bins.

  3. Also, thanks for having this blog! We need as much information as we can get about recycling, and it's great to find a resource like this.