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Shredded paper, plastic bags no longer recyclable in Turlock
Blue can
Plastic grocery bags and shredded paper can no longer be put in blue recyclable cans in Turlock. - photo by Photo Contributed

Blue Can Recyclable Items

• Flattened cardboard
• Paper grocery bags
• Magazines, newspapers
• Junk mail
• Soda, food cans
• Bottles, jars
• Food, household plastic bottles

• Plastic grocery bags
• Milk cartons
• Shredded paper
• Wax paper
• Plastic microwave trays
• Light bulbs
• Aerosol spray cans




Turlock residents may now need to take additional steps to sort their trash as locals will no longer be able to recycle shredded paper or plastic bags according to the City of Turlock.

This month with their August billing papers the City issued residents a pamphlet on how to recycle in an effort to educate the public on proper disposal techniques.

“It was sent as a reminder because we are having blue can contamination issues,” said Toni Cordell, staff services technician of the Municipal Services Department. “In a perfect world, if people properly recycled materials we wouldn’t have these issues.”

While many consider plastic and paper recyclable items, according to the City of Turlock certain forms of these products have recently become an issue. For instance, the machine which separates the recyclables does not possess the mechanism to open the plastic bags in which residents often collect their recyclables. Similarly, shredded paper will no longer be accepted because once it’s shredded down it becomes too low of a grade to be processed.

This is the first time that the City has had to reach out to residents to educate them on proper recycling techniques. However, while locals can no longer conveniently drop shredded paper and plastic bags into their blue cans, the materials can be taken to the buyback center and many grocery stores also accept plastic bags. The City has also advised residents to collect their recyclables in paper bags which are acceptable.