Windsor

Recycle wrapping paper, toss the ribbons says waste authority

The festivities are over and there’s a mountain of wrapping paper near the door.

Zero Waste Canada estimates each Canadian tosses 50 kilograms of garbage over the holidays

Ribbons, glitter and foil paper cause problems at the recycling plant. (Getty Images/Moment RF)

The festivities are over and there's a mountain of wrapping paper near the door. 

So what do you do with it?

Essex-Windsor Solid Waste Authority says that depends on what it's made of. 

"Gift wrap, gift bags — as long as they're 100 per cent paper, we take it," said Cathy Copot-Nepszy with EWSWA. "If it's got roping or ribbons on it, we don't take it."

Paper items can go in the red box. Copot-Nepszy says it's easy to tell if your wrapping paper or gift bag is recyclable.

"If you tear it, you'd be able to tell that it's fibre."

Many gift bags and even some wrapping paper may also have markings on the bottom that talk about content.

Ribbons, glitter and foil paper cause problems at the recycling plant.

"They actually hurt our process, they get caught in our equipment," said Copot-Nepszy. "It's considered contamination, so we have to try and sort through that material and pull it off."

Zero Waste Canada estimates each Canadian tosses 50 kilograms of garbage over the holidays — 25 per cent more than the rest of the year.

When it comes to dinner festivities, Copot-Nepszy says foil trays, foil cake plates are all recyclable.

"That goes in your blue box along with all your plastic bottles and cans," said Copot-Nepszy. "The cleaner the better, if possible."

Decorations are generally not recyclable — donate if they're still functional or toss them in the trash. 

Running out of room in your red or blue box? Use a yard waste bag instead for your holiday paper.

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