Dear Recycle Lady

Dear Recycle Lady,

Last weekend my family and I went camping. For eating utensils, I took a couple packages of compostable knives, forks and spoons that I found at Kroger. I didn’t tell family members that the utensils were different; I just asked them how they compared with the utensils that we had previously used. All thought they were much better and stronger than the former ones. They could actually cut their steaks with the knife.

Happy Camper

Dear Happy Camper,

Thanks for the information about the compostable eating utensils. I am delighted that you and your family gave them the seal of approval. Your new utensils may have been made of bamboo, which can be white and look very much like plastic or they may have been tan-colored and look more like wood. Besides bamboo, there are also wooden cutlery sets available. Sustainable, biodegradable, and ecofriendly reusable eating utensils are now available at Kroger, Wal-Mart, Amazon, and other stores.


Dear Recycle Lady,

The plastic bottle that my toilet cleaner comes in is not marked recyclable. Since it is plastic and looks like many of the plastic bottles that are recyclable, I am wondering why this particular bottle is not recyclable.


Dear Cleaner,

According to, plastic packaging for chemical cleaners often are not recyclable due to the durability needed to contain these harsh ingredients. Have you tried some of the green cleaning products? There are many green cleaning products now on the market that are made from ingredients that are environmentally friendly and can be just as effective as chemical ones. You may need to use a little bit more of them and a little extra time, but the same effect can be achieved. It’s worth it to keep the chemicals from going down the drain into the wastewater. Although wastewater treatment facilities make every attempt to remove the cleaning chemicals, some are particularly hard to remove and may end up being discharged into rivers and streams and eventually into our water supply.


Dear Readers,

The Recycle Center is having a large amount of#5 plastic and #6 plastic food containers put in the #1 and #2 plastics bins. None of these containers are recyclable locally so they must be removed so they don’t contaminate the rest of the plastics. Removing these containers is very time-consuming and requires the time of employees who need to be working elsewhere. Currently, the Center is operating with limited staff, and they will greatly appreciate any help you can give them. When in doubt, throw it out is a good decision with all recyclables.


Have questions about recycling, or interesting information about recycling? Send questions or requests to  Dear Recycle Lady is sponsored jointly by the Greenbrier Recycling Center and Greenworks Recycling.


more recommended stories