Thursday, January 8th, 2009

The Morris County Municipal Utilities Authority urges residents to reuse or recycle plastic grocery store bags and keep them out of the waste stream.
However, Penny Jones, recycling education specialist with the MUA, said individuals who choose to recycle the plastic bags must be careful to keep the bags away from other recyclable materials.

“It is critical that no one puts plastic bags into recycling containers that are designated for bottles, cans or paper,” Jones said. “The plastic bags jam the processing machines and wreak havoc with the equipment in recycling facilities.”

Jones said the MUA encourages people to reuse the plastic bags or take them to a supermarket that has a collection bin.

“Not all supermarkets have such bins, so calling the store ahead of time is a good idea,” Jones said.

The plastic grocery bags may also be taken to an individual’s municipal recycling center if the center has a container designated for those bags only.
Jones said the products derived from recycled plastic bags include composite lumber, playground items and other grocery and garbage bags.

Anyone wanting additional information about reusing or properly recycling plastic grocery bags may contact his or her municipal recycling coordinator, or the Morris County MUA at 973-285-8394.
Information is also available at www.plasticbagrecycling.org.