Fife is first in Scotland to allow plastic bags and ready meal wrappers to go into green bins

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The first facility in Scotland that can recycle flexible plastic and film will be up and running from Monday.

Fife Council will begin collecting a wider range of plastics from February 21 after being awarded £470,000 from the Scottish Government’s Recycling Improvement Fund to buy a machine that can efficiently and effectively separate different types of plastic waste.

Up until now, Fifers could not recycle the likes of plastic bags, bubble wrap or ready meal wrappers in their green bin.

But now householders can now put them in - without worry.

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Plastic bags can now be out in green bins in Fife (Pic: Lisa Ferguson)Plastic bags can now be out in green bins in Fife (Pic: Lisa Ferguson)
Plastic bags can now be out in green bins in Fife (Pic: Lisa Ferguson)
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Based in Dunfermline, the new ‘Tomra Optical Sorter’ will sort and bale plastics that go on to be recycled by YES Recycling in Glenrothes.

The bales of plastic are then turned into Ecosheet – a plywood alternative that can be used in construction, DIY, agriculture, and fabrication.

Councillor Ross Vettraino, convener of Fife Council’s environment and protective services sub committee, said: “We are very pleased to start accepting flexible plastics (plastic film) at the kerbside for recycling.

Ready meal wrappers can now go into green bins in Fife (Pic: TSPL)Ready meal wrappers can now go into green bins in Fife (Pic: TSPL)
Ready meal wrappers can now go into green bins in Fife (Pic: TSPL)

“Fife Council is leading the way, and is the first Council in Scotland to offer a kerbside collection service for soft plastics.

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“Plastics including plastic bags, vegetable bags and wrappers, the film from the top of ready meal trays, plus pet food pouches and bubble wrap can now be deposited in the green bins.

“By recycling our plastic to make new products such as ecosheets we are moving away from using virgin raw materials and taking a step towards developing a circular economy.

“Not only are we helping reduce carbon emissions and combating climate change when we recycle our plastic we also make a financial saving by avoiding the £100k cost of disposal and landfill tax each year. ”

The Scottish Government’s Recycling Improvement Fund aims to help communities move to a more circular economy, where materials and products are kept in use for as long as possible, and we move away from short-term, wasteful, throwaway approaches.

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Zero Waste Scotland is administering the fund, which is set to transform Scotland’s recycling infrastructure, and the new facility is being delivered by Cireco, Fife Council’s arms length organisation.

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