News Rejected recycling loads cost taxpayers £25,000 in two months

Rejected recycling loads cost taxpayers £25,000 in two months  image

Contamination of recycling loads in Maidstone has cost taxpayers across Kent £25,000 in the past two months alone.

Maidstone Borough Council is asking every household to take care when they throw away their rubbish to make sure they do not contaminate their green recycling bins with the wrong materials.

Cllr Patrik Garten, Cabinet Member for Environmental Services at Maidstone Borough Council said:

“It is everyone's responsibility to avoid contamination of our recycling.

“Dirty nappies, black sacks and plastic bags are the most common items incorrectly placed in recycling bins. These must all be put into your main household black bin and cannot be recycled.

“We also find food waste incorrectly placed in the recycling bin, this needs to go into the separate food bin for weekly collection.

“If our refuse collectors can see that the wrong materials have been put into the green recycling bins they will not empty them and will also place a sticker on the bin to say it is contaminated. They do not have enough time to let each resident know what contaminated their individual bin, as each crew visit between 800 to 1,000 homes each day. However, to help people understand what can and cannot be recycled we will be hanging bin hangers on green recycling bins in Maidstone over the next four weeks.

“We are really grateful that the majority of our residents do recycle correctly as we have one of the best recycling rates in Kent at 50%, which is higher than the national average of 44%. So, I would like to say a massive thank you to those residents who are helping us to maintain this.

“Maidstone Council needs to crack down on households which not only upset our fabulous recycling rates but whose actions impose unnecessary costs, which ultimately all taxpayers will have to bear. The extra costs are incurred when contaminated loads are refused by the recycling centre.

“We’ve gone to a lot of effort letting residents know what can and cannot be recycled and will continue to do so. If we all play our part and take a little extra time to make sure only the correct items are in the recycling bin, that will reduce contamination, reduce the costs incurred and improve the environment, for the benefit of everyone.”

To check what can or cannot be recycled in the borough, please visit: or if you have a specific question, please email

The MBC waste team will be on hand at the new Eco Hub, a pop-up information centre in The Mall to help and support people to live more sustainably, save money and reduce their carbon footprint. The Eco Hub is located on the upper level on The Mall shopping centre, next door to Vision Express.

The waste team will be there:

Fri 25 August – 10am to 1pm

Thurs 31 August – 10am to 1pm

Thurs 7 September – 10am to 1pm

For more information on opening times and events please visit:

Sign up to Maidstone Borough Council e-newsletters ‘Stay Connected’ to receive vital news and updates via email for the many services and events provided by the Council

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