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Inbound Curbside Recyclables for MRFs

Guidelines for Inbound Curbside Recyclables for Material Recovery

Facilities - Minimum Recommended Materials List


The information provided by ISRI is for general guidance only and not for legal purposes. Anyone utilizing

these Specifications or the Additional Materials which may be added to Curbside residential single stream and

dual stream programs (below) is advised to consult with their legal counsel on all matters with respect to any

particular situation involving contracts and agreements implied or written, or any other potentially litigious

situations. The application and impact of laws can vary widely based on the specific locality and facts involved,

and this document is not meant to be inclusive of all situations.

Materials accepted may be modified by mutual agreement between local governments, homeowner

associations, and recyclables collectors (“buyer” of MRF separating, cleaning and marketing services) and

Material Recovery Facilities (“Provider” of MRF services). For local purposes, parties to a local Residential

recycling transaction may specify particular variations, additions or deletions, as are suited for their specific

programs and for their individual convenience. Whatever is decided should be mutually agreed to and so

stipulated in writing.

The parties should use their own due diligence to insure that materials collected in Curbside Residential

Single Stream or Dual Stream programs, and sold from MRFs after processing, consist of properly packaged

materials suitable for recycling. Failure to maintain quality in residential recycling, and lack of diligence, are

the chief reasons for problems arising from such programs.

Arbitrary deductions, valuations, cancellations and/or rejections in MRF transactions are counter to

acceptable good trade practices.

Buyers will supply the agreed-upon quality of Curbside residential single stream or dual stream material into

a MRF and shall not be responsible for the use of that material thereafter when sold for recycling if material

is accepted by the seller of MRF services, unless such materials contain hazardous waste.

Paper/Acceptable Fiber (Acceptable)

Paper (not preferred or may be prohibited) with

examples (not inclusive)

All full-sheet office paper


white paper

Colored paper

Newspaper (plastic bags and strings removed)

Magazines (all types)


catalogs (all types)

Phonebooks (all types)


unk mail


Tissue boxes and tissue/towel rolls

Paper office folders

Paper towel and toilet paper rolls

Shredded Paper


Tissue paper

Wall paper

Paper towels

Wax paper

Wrapping paper

Any paper which has the potential to be

contaminated with bodily fluid

Cardboard (OCC) Acceptable

Cardboard (not preferred or may be prohibited) with

examples (not inclusive)

Paper Boxes- Packing boxes, corrugated liners,

boxboard (i.e. shoeboxes, gift boxes, cereal boxes),

Brown or Kraft paper bags, brown wrapping paper,

corrugated packing material.

Cardboard lined with plastic (i.e. bubble wrap boxes)

Waxed/waterproof cardboard.

Boxes containing food (i.e. contaminated boxes

containing pizza, excessive oil, or cheese), excessive

liquids, or other materials. Acceptable delivery boxes

shall not contain any of these.