Ask the Waste Wizard to find out where and how to properly dispose of an item.


Every year, the City of Toronto manages approximately 450,000 tonnes of garbage. This requires money, energy, and resources and takes up valuable landfill space. The City’s Long Term Waste Management Strategy highlights the importance of reusing, recycling and most importantly reducing waste as the less waste that is produced, the less there is to manage.

What Happens to Garbage?

Garbage is collected and brought to one of the City’s transfer stations. From there, it is loaded onto bigger tractor-trailers and hauled to the City-owned Green Lane Landfill in Southwold Township, Ontario for safe and environmentally sustainable disposal.

Items Accepted in the Garbage Bin

Black plastic containers, bubble wrap, blister packs, foil candy wrappers, pet hair, a stand-up pouch, vacuum cleaner bag, candles, popsicle sticks, chewing bum, corks and a broken ceramic

  • Cleaning wipes
  • Masks, plastic gloves
  • Liner bags (cereal, cookies, crackers)
  • Black plastic food containers, cutlery, lids
  • Hot drink cups (recycle non-black lids and sleeves)
  • Cold drink cups, straws (recycle lids)
  • Plastic bubble wrap
  • Laminated plastic film (stand-up pouches, snack food bags)
  • Dryer and disposable mop sheets, baby wipes, make-up pads, cotton tipped swabs, dental floss
  • Plastic or foil wrappers, aluminum foil
  • Drink pouches, straws
  • Popsicle sticks, toothpicks, wood chips, pencil shavings
  • Hair, pet hair, feathers, nail clippings, dryer lint, candles and wax, cigarette butts and ashes
  • Gum packages, blister packs
  • Dishes, drinking glasses
  • Metallic gift wrap and bows
  • Ribbons
  • Wooden fruit crates
  • Broken mugs, dishes

An Important Reminder About Coffee Pods

The City does not accept coffee pods in its Blue Bin recycling or Green Bin organics programs. All coffee pods, including those that are labelled or marketed as recyclable or compostable, must be disposed of in the garbage or returned to retailers/manufacturers who have take-back programs.

The City of Toronto commissioned research related to disposal of single-serve coffee and tea pods. The findings include feedback from Toronto residents about use, attitudes and disposal behaviours.

Important Information About Compostable and Biodegradable Items

The City does not accept the following items marketed or labelled as compostable or biodegradable in its Green Bin organics or Blue Bin recycling programs:

  • containers/packaging
  • coffee pods
  • coffee cups
  • cutlery.

These items, which may be made of or lined with a bio-based plastic, must be disposed of in the garbage. Alternatively, products can be returned to retailers/manufacturers who have take-back programs.