Paper recycling process
- Little to no food, oil and grease
- Why napkins and paper to-go containers aren't accepted
- Long enough fiber lengths
- Why shredded paper and tissue paper aren't accepted
- Not overly dyed
- Why most wrapping paper and blueprint paper aren't accepted
Papers are sorted into 3 different categories at the recycling facility.
- Mixed paper
After sorting, paper is either baled or put into a compactor that's destined to go to West Rock paper mill in St. Paul. The majority of our residential papers go to West Rock to be made into new boxboard (think cracker and cereal boxes).
The first step in the paper recycling process is to 'pulp' the paper. Paper is pushed into a massive mixing bowl with water. The water and agitation breaks papers apart into their individual fibers. From there the fiber is further processed and de-inked. All metal items (staples and paper clips) plastic (windows from envelopes) are removed. The paper pulp will eventually go through a series of rollers to be pressed out and formed into massive rolls of paper.
Watch a video of the recycling sorting process or sign up to tour the recycling facility