Have you ever wondered about what happens to your waste after you drop it off at the local recycling centre? Do you want to know how they are processed and turned into something new? Great! You've come to the right place. This blog post explores what happens when your bottles, cans, paper and other items make their way to the recycling centre from start to finish.

Sorting and Separating 

When your recyclables arrive at the recycling centre, they are sorted into different categories based on their material type. For example, plastic bottles and cans are separated from glass containers and paper products. Both people and machines do this sorting process. After everything is sorted, the waste is sent to a shredding machine, which is broken down into smaller pieces. The shredded materials are then passed through a magnet which attracts any metallic objects that were included in the mix.

Cleaning and Washing

Once all the materials have been sorted and separated, they go through a cleaning process involving a bath of warm water mixed with detergent or enzymes. This step aims to remove any dirt or oils that may be present on the materials before they can be recycled into something new. During this stage, contaminants such as food scraps or non-recyclable items like plastic bags are also removed.

Melting Down and Moulding

After all the materials have been cleaned and washed, they are ready to melt down and mould into new products. Depending on what kind of material was used (i.e., aluminium cans vs plastic bottles), different methods will be used for melting them down into melted liquid forms that can then be moulded into whatever shape is needed for its intended purpose (i.e., water bottle lids). The newly formed products are then sent to manufacturers who use them in their production processes.


Recycling is a complex process. From sorting and separating materials to washing away contaminants to finally moulding recycled goods into something new — it's an intricate process that requires attention to detail. But, by understanding what happens at your local recycling centre, you can become part of the solution when it comes to reducing our collective impact on our environment! So go ahead — get out there today and start making a difference. For further advice and info, contact your local recycling centre today. A member of the team will be happy to help you.