Public Works

Solid Waste & Recycling


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What are organics?

Organics include all food scraps, most non-recyclable and food-soiled paper, certified compostable plastics and many other things.  At this time yard waste can not be included with other organics in the green organics recycling carts. 

Food scraps

  • Fruits and vegetables.
  • Meat, fish and bones.
  • Bread, pasta and baked goods.
  • Eggshells.
  • Dairy products.
Organics - Food on plate

Food-soiled and non-recyclable paper

  • Napkins and paper towels (not used with chemical cleaners).
  • BPI certified cups, plates, bowls, utensils and take-out containers (see below for more information).
  • Food soiled paper, including pizza boxes and egg cartons.
  • Facial tissue.
Compostable Paper Items

 Other residential compostable items

  • Coffee grounds, filters and tea bags (remove staples, no nylon tea bags).
  • Tissues, cotton balls and cotton swabs (with paper stems only).
  • Wood chopsticks, Popsicle sticks and toothpicks.
  • Floral trimmings and house plants.
  • Animal and human hair and nail clippings.
  • Small quantities of grease and oil (ex. grease on a paper towel or leftover pasta cooked with oil).
Organics - Other Compostable

Certified compostable products

  • Look for the logo on the right to determining if compostable bags, coffee cups, paper plates, compostable silverware, take-out containers, wax and parchment paper and other foodservice items are accepted in the organics recycling program. In order to be accepted in the organics recycling program the item must be certified compostable by BPI. The BPI logo ensures the item has been scientifically tested in a commercial composting setting to fully and safely break down leaving no unnatural byproducts. 
  • The Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI) is a third party certification company.  To verify if products are certified compostable, visit: and search the Certified Compostable Products Catalog.

BPI Logo




Items not accepted in organics collection program

A detailed “yes and no” list has even more examples of what can and can’t go into organics recycling collection. 

SÍ or No Lista de Productos Orgánicos Residencuiales Aceptables (Spanish)

Daim Ntawv Teev Cov Khoom Pub Siv Hauv Zej Zos Nyob (txuas ntxiv) (Hmong)

Liiska Waxyaabaha Dabiiciga Ah ee Guryaha (Somali)

Last updated Dec 31, 2020



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