What can I put in my bin?

Recycling bin - green bin and black box

Your green wheelie bin is for recycling and is collected fortnightly.

If you live in a house that has no room for a wheelie bin, you can have a black box for your recycling.

Please leave your bin/box for collection on the front boundary of your property for 6am on collection day.

Important information

Please make sure all the bottles and containers/tins are empty and place them into your recycling bin loose, without any plastic bags or sacks.

Items that you can and can't put in your recycling bin are listed below.

Crews will not collect your bins if they are contaminated with incorrect materials. If you are unsure please email recycling@maidstone.gov.uk.

Glass bottles & jars Plastic sacks
Plastic meat trays Nappies
Fruit & vegetable punnets Food waste
Plastic bottles Cling film and plastic films
Yogurt pots & plastic tubs Crisp packets / pet food pouches
Newspaper & magazines Food & drink cartons
Leaflets, envelopes & junk mail Bread bags
Phone books & yellow pages Carrier bags         
Cardboard packaging Polystyrene
Flattened cardboard Textiles, shoes or clothes
Cans & tins Electrical items
Sweet & biscuit tins Batteries AA, AAA etc
Metal bottle tops & jar lids   
Kitchen foil & foil trays   
Empty aerosol cans

Where can I recycle?



Please help us to help charities by tying shoes together in pairs and putting everything into the right banks which have been outlined below.

Allington: London Road Park & Ride
Barming: The Bull Inn, Tonbridge Road
East Farleigh: The Bull Pub, Lower Road
Grafty Green: Who'd a Thought It Pub, Headcorn Road
Grove Green: Tesco, Grovewood Drive
Leeds: Leeds Castle Golf Course
Mote Park: Willington Street Park & Ride
Senacre: Senacre Square, Woolley Road
Shepway: Morrisons, Sutton Road
Town Centre: Samaritans, 48 Grecian Street

Where does my recycling go?


Our waste collection vehicles have two separate sections; one for food recycling which is collected every week and the other for either mixed recycling or rubbish which are collected fortnightly on alternating weeks. This means that we have half as many vehicles on the road which helps to reduce traffic levels and carbon emissions.

Mixed recycling


  • Paper, card and cardboard
  • Glass bottles and jars
  • Plastic bottles
  • Plastic grocery packaging
  • Tins and cans
  • Kitchen foil and foil trays
  • Empty aerosol cans

Mixed recycling is taken to a Materials Recycling Facility (MRF) in Crayford.

Once at Crayford the mixed recycling is sorted into specific categories such as paper, card, glass, plastic, and metals which are baled and ready to then be sent on to suppliers to be made into new products.


The rubbish from your black bin is taken to Kent Enviropower in Allington. Here the waste is burnt to create electricity.

Food recycling

The food recycling collected from resident’s homes is taken to a composting facility in East Malling. It’s treated at high temperatures to kill any harmful bacteria and then used locally on farms as a soil improver.

Garden waste

Green waste collected from your garden bin is taken to East Malling for composting, which is used on local farms.

Learn more about recycling


Thanks to our residents in 2020/21 we recycled and composted over 50% of our waste and this year the figure is still around that level. All recycling and composting helps to reduce global warming and reduce the environmental impact of waste. Please help us by recycling and composting as much of your waste as you can.

Love Food Hate Waste

A third of the food we buy in the UK gets thrown away. For tips on storing food and recipes for using up leftovers you can visit the Love Food Hate Waste website.

Our top tip for reducing food waste - check the cupboards and fridge before you go shopping, make a list and only buy what you actually need to eat. The average family could save up to £750 per year by reducing food waste.

Educational visits

If you are a school, community group or run a Cub or Brownie pack, we can give talks and presentations. Topics include recycling, composting and littering.

If your group would like to organise a litter pick, we can give advice, equipment and even help collect the rubbish.

If you'd like to organise a litter pick or are interested in our educational visits email waste@maidstone.gov.uk.

Eco Schools

Eco Schools is a programme for schools which aims to raise awareness of sustainable development issues, to find out more you can take a look on the Keep Britain Tidy website.

Food recycling - black and orange food bin

Where to purchase a kitchen caddy

Residents can buy a kitchen caddy from most homeware stores or online. Alternatively you can reuse a container, such as an ice cream tub.

Do I need to line my kitchen caddy?

You don’t have to line your kitchen caddy, but if you do please use compostable bags, kitchen roll or newspaper. Liners are made out of potato starch, corn starch or paper and are certified EN 13432.

Please don't use plastic bags as they can’t be composted.

If you choose to line your caddy, residents are able to purchase liners at a discounted rate from Bio Bag. Click here to purchase.

What can I put in my kitchen caddy or food bin?

You can put any raw or cooked food in your caddy and can even scrape uneaten food straight into it.

All dairy products Liquids
Bread, cakes & pastries Oil or liquid fat
Eggs Packaging of any sort
Fruit & vegetables - raw & cooked Plastic bags
Meat & fish - raw & cooked including bones Compostable cups & plates
Rice, pasta & beans   
Tea bags & coffee grounds   
Takeaway leftovers   
Uneaten food from your plates & dishes 

Garden waste - brown bin

Items you can and can't put in your garden bin:

Flowers & Plants Kitchen scraps
Grass cuttings Rubble
Hedge trimmings and prunings Stones
Leaves & small branches Turf
Weeds and a small amount of leaves Soil or compost

We may not collect your garden bin if it is contaminated with incorrect materials. If you are unsure please ask recycling@maidstone.gov.uk.

It’s important that the quality of material collected for composting is high with no contamination with animal or food waste if it is to be of an acceptable standard for composting. This includes fruit or vegetable matter that may have come into contact with animal matter when being prepared in the kitchen.

If you have food waste, this will be collected separately for treatment when presented in the 23L orange/brown caddy. Fruit and other suitable food waste can be composted at home and all householders with gardens, are encouraged to use this sustainable disposal method.

We will not be able to take your bin if it's too heavy for the crew to move safely, or if the collection vehicle can't pick it up.

Non-recyclable waste - black bins and sacks

Your black wheelie bin is for rubbish that can’t be recycled and is collected fortnightly. You’ll need to make sure the rubbish is inside the bin with the lid shut. Please don't put rubbish on top or by the side of the bin, crews are instructed not to remove excess side waste.

If you live in a house that has no room for a wheelie bin, you’ll need to use black sacks. These can be readily purchased in all supermarkets and local convenience stores.

Please leave your bin or sacks for collection on the front boundary of your property for 6am on collection day.

Items that you cannot put in your black bin:

Builders rubbish such as rubble, tiles or wood
Bulky heavy items
DIY stuff such as paint tins
Electrical items
Flammable liquids
Gas bottles including fire extinguishers
Grass or other garden waste
Tyres or car batteries