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The recycling journey

Have you ever wondered what happens to all your recycling? We have split the process into four stages, simply click on the image discover what happens to each one.

Stage three - bulking

Once the ‘Recycle First’ vehicle is full it returns to one of our depots in Winsford and Ellesmere Port.

Upon arrival the first stage is to remove the separate compartments from the vehicle using a forklift truck.  Materials which have been fully sorted at the kerbside such as glass and paper are tipped directly into large bays.  The compartment containing the collected food waste is emptied into a large sealed container; this ensures it remains safe from animals and other vermin.

The next stage is to eject all the collected cardboard from the rear of the vehicle; this cardboard is then squashed into bales.  Once all the cardboard has been removed, the collection vehicle enters the sorting hall; here the mixed cans and plastic are tipped out of the rear of the vehicle. 

These mixed materials are put through a series of sorting machines.  This process uses specialised machinery including eddy current and magnetic separators to divide the materials into plastic, steel and aluminium. 

Once separated, the materials are squashed into bales ready to be sent off to reprocessors across the UK.  Why not visit our interactive map to see where your materials are going to.

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