Commercial Recycling

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Orange County Solid Waste Management operates a recycling collection program and an organics collection program for the commercial sector in Orange County. Call (919) 968-2788 or email us to find out if your business is eligible for the commercial recycling program or organics collection program.

Commercial Recycling
Businesses receiving this service are responsible for proper preparation of recyclable materials and cart and site cleanliness.  Our commercial recycling program’s primary focus is to serve those County businesses with ABC permits, but businesses on or adjacent to our existing recycling routes are also eligible. A business must demonstrate a willingness to properly prepare materials for recycling, maintain the site, and there must be adequate space for truck access.

The Single Stream Recycling materials are collected in labeled carts at commercial recycling locations.  DO NOT LEAVE RECYCLING IN PLASTIC BAGS! If recyclables are collected in plastic bags, please remove the recyclables, place them inside the blue carts, and discard the bag elsewhere. Laminated posters are also available for our customers. 



Corrugated Cardboard
Corrugated cardboard is banned from landfill disposal. Businesses that generate fewer than fifty boxes per week may use one of the four 24-hour drop-off sites located throughout the county.  Businesses may deliver unlimited amounts of separated cardboard to the landfill for recycling at no charge, or contract privately for cardboard recycling services.

Commercial Organic Waste Collection
Orange County Solid Waste Management operates and manages the Commercial Organics Recycling Program that diverts more than 3,000 tons of food waste and other compostable material from landfill disposal each year.

Businesses that are eligible for the Commercial organics program either produce at least 2 tons of organic waste each month, or can partner with neighboring buusinesses to reach that tonnage requirement.  A business must demonstrate a willingness to properly separate materials for composting, maintain the site, and there must be adequate space for truck access.

If you are interested in organics collection, please contact our office so we can assess eligibility.  Collection and composting service is provided in carts by Brooks Contracting, or the sub-contractor, Compost Now

Because this material goes to a commercial composting company, we are able to accept a much wider array of organics.  Produce and meat preparation waste, post-consumer waste, and certified compostable serving ware  from local restaurants, grocery stores, florists, institutions, and special events are among the materials collected for composting.  Commercial Composting Poster 

The finished compost is available for sale in bulk and in bags at the Orange County Landfill and in bags at Southern States in Carrboro. 

Hazardous Waste
Orange County businesses that produce less than 220 pounds per month of hazardous material such as paint, pesticides, automotive fluids, fluorescent lights or any other material that might be toxic, flammable or otherwise hazardous can bring them to the Hazardous Waste Collection located at the Orange County Landfill on Eubanks Rd. in Chapel Hill.  Orange County businesses with more than 25 pounds of material must set up an appointment prior to delivering materials. Call (919) 968-2788 or email

Technical Assistance
We provide technical assistance for waste reduction and recycling to businesses and other non-residential entities on request at no charge. This ranges from marketing questions, facility waste assessments to helping to set up a recycling program.


tubsTubs, cups and buckets #2, #4 and #5

Tubs, cups and buckets and other rigid non bottle plastics #2, #4, #5 only.

#1 or #6 boxes, clamshells, or styrofoam, no #7 PLA, no plastic bags or other non-rigid plastics. Recycle clean dry plastic bags at participating grocery stores.
Plastic Bottles, Jugs and Jars
Plastic bottles have a neck smaller than the base.  Leave the cap on! Flatten bottle or jug if possible and put the cap back on. No plastic bags or other non-rigid plastics, No clamshells or Styrofoam.

Glass Bottles and Jars

Clear, brown, green and blue glass bottles and jars only.  Rinse clean. Lids and labels are OK. No dishes, ceramics, cookware, window glass, drinking glass, light bulbs, pyrex or mirrors

Metal Cans

Aluminum and steel/tin food or beverage cans.  Tuck metal lids inside cans and crimp the edge shut. Flatten what you can to save space. No scrap metal, pots, pans or car parts.

Aerosol Spray Cans

Must be completely empty.  Do not puncture or flatten.  

Aluminum Foil and Trays

Must be clean. Rinse off any food residue and crush what you can to save space. No foil with food or lots of grease on it.

paper envweb
Mixed Paper

Any clean, dry paper that tears. Junk mail, office and school paper, manila folders. Envelope windows and staples are OK.Shredded paper with mixed paper is OK if it is in a paper bag.

No tissue or paper towels. No wax coated or laminated paper. Remove credit cards or other plastic items from junk mail.

Single layer cardboard

Cereal boxes, cracker boxes, tissue boxes, paper towel rolls, frozen food boxes, etc. Remove any plastic or foil lining.   

Food and drink cartons of all types

Flat-topped and gable topped drink boxes.  Plastic spouts are OK.  Must be empty and rinsed.  


Newspaper and associated inserts.  Remove plastic bags or rubber bands before recycling.


24-hour recycling drop-off sites have Magazine Racks for the reuse and sharing of magazines in good condition.  


Phone books and other paperback books are OK. Must be clean. Remove from plastic bags before recycling.  No hardcover books.