We know the guilty feeling of throwing away something that might be recyclable. Maybe that item was really heavy. Perhaps it was made of metal. It might even be made of nothing but paper. You want so badly to recycle that item because the thought of something that just might, maybe, possibly have a slight chance at being recycled is too much to resist. Instead of sending it straight to the garbage, you make a wish and put it in your recycling bin.
Here at Take Care of Texas, we love supporting avid recyclers. But could you be causing more harm than good when you put these questionable items in your curbside bin? Recycling items containing food stuffs or unrecyclable components can contaminate an entire batch of recycling and damage machinery, thus rendering recycling efforts virtually useless.
A term known throughout the recycling community for putting non-recyclable material into the recycle bin is called “wish-cycling.” The term was coined by Bill Keegan, the president of a recycling company in Shakopee, MI, who defined it as “the practice of tossing questionable items in the recycling bin, hoping they can somehow be recycled.”