No-Sort Recycling FAQ's

Q: Are pizza boxes accepted in my blue recycling cart?

A: Yes. All pizza delivery boxes are recyclable. Make sure they are empty (no food, wax paper liners, or little plastic tables left inside), flatten, and place in your blue cart. The amount of grease on the cardboard does not matter.


Q: Can I recycle aluminum foil?

A: No. Aluminum trays, tins, and foil (including foil seal on yogurt containers) are not accepted in your blue recycling cart.


Q: What if my plastic container does not have a recycling symbol with a number in it, can I still recycle it?

A: No. The only plastics that are acceptable in your blue recycling cart are those with the recycling symbol and a number (1-7) on the bottom. Examples of items that may not have a number on them include plastic cutlery, drinking straws, etc.


Q: What types of cartons are acceptable in my blue recycling cart?

A: Cartons that can be placed in your blue cart include milk, juice and juice boxes, soup, broth, and wine cartons. Items that are not acceptable are foil juice or food pouches (e.g. Capri Sun, applesauce, or tuna pouches, etc.), plastic lined coffee cups, paper ice cream tubs, and Styrofoam egg cartons.


Q: Can I recycle my drinking glasses, vases, etc.?

A: No. Glass that does not contain a product when purchased may contain strengthening additives or chemicals. If you cannot donate these items, please place them in the garbage. Examples of these items include:

       • Whole or broken drinking glasses, plates, bowls, etc.
       • Glass vases or decorative glass items
       • Pyrex containers
       • Window glass
       • Ceramics or pottery
       • Mirrors

Glass that is acceptable includes pasta sauce, pickle, salsa, and mason jars; beer, wine, salad dressing, vegetable and/or olive oil bottles, etc. All containers that held food or a beverage are acceptable in your blue recycling cart.


Q: How do I prepare my recycling for the blue recycling cart?

A: No-Sort makes recycling easier! Simply rinse your containers and place all recyclables loose or in paper bags in your blue recycling cart. Do not place plastic bags in your blue recycling cart. You may collect your recycling in plastic bags, but you must dump the recyclables out of the plastic bag into the cart and place the plastic bag in the garbage or bring it to a participating grocery store for recycling. You may also collect recycling in your blue square City of Moorhead recycling tote and empty the contents into your blue recycling cart for collection.


Q: What businesses have plastic bag recycling drop-off locations?

A: Businesses in the Moorhead/Fargo/West Fargo area that offer plastic bag recycling include Hornbacher’s, Target, Wal-Mart, Family Fare, Cash Wise, and Lowes. For a list of acceptable items and addresses to all of the locations in our area visit the Clay County Solid Waste Management page.


Q: What types of boxes and paper are accepted in the blue recycling cart?

A: The list of acceptable boxes and paper materials include:
       • Cardboard
       • Boxes that go in the cupboard (e.g. cereal, pasta, cracker boxes)
       • Boxes that products are packaged in (e.g. gift, shoe, and electronic boxes)
       • Other boxes (e.g. soda, beer, toothpaste, facial tissue, and dryer sheet boxes)
       • Envelopes (white, brown, with or without windows)
       • Mail, office, and school papers
       • Magazines and catalogs
       • Newspaper and inserts
       • Paper bags
       • Phone books and other soft cover books (no spiral phone books or hardcover books)

DO NOT recycle plastic or wax lined paper (commonly found on boxes that go in the freezer). Examples of these types of products include frozen food boxes, paper plates, butter boxes, and frozen dinner boxes.

Do a ‘tear test’ to see if there’s a plastic or wax lining if you are unsure if a particular paper is recyclable. The paper will either not tear easily if there’s a plastic or wax liner or the layer of separation between the paper and the plastic or wax lining will be visible after tearing the paper. If you are still unsure, throw it in the garbage: WHEN IN DOUBT, THROW IT OUT.


Q: What happens to my recycling?

A: Recycling is collected by City of Moorhead Sanitation crews. The City contracts with MinnKota EnviroServices, Inc. to handle, process, and transport the recyclable materials. To learn more about how the No-Sort recycling is sorted at the MRF (Materials Recovery Facility), watch Recycling 101 with Mr. Cool Can, or Eureka Recycling's Story of a Cereal Box.

To learn more about the recycling process of various products, watch the following videos produced by Dem-Con Companies based in Shakopee, Minnesota. Their videos follow recyclables from the material recovery facility (MRF) to other Minnesota companies to be made into new products.
       • Paper (Fiber) Recycling
       • Plastic Recycling
       • Glass Recycling
       • Metal Recycling