Sorting & Resale Process

Recycling Sorting Facility

Curb It! helps 145,000 households recycle more than 25,000 tons of materials each year. Once the green Curb It! cart is emptied, those recyclables are delivered to Mid America Recycling, where mechanical processes and people sort, bundle and sell recyclables.

How Much is Recycled

All of the materials accepted in the program are recycled. However, when unaccepted materials wind up in the cart, they are separated and sent to the landfill. Consistently, only 5 percent of the material that arrives through Curb It! is not recyclable. This "contamination rate" is low compared to other recycling facilities across the country.

Plastic bags and clothes are examples of contaminants and are sent to the landfill. These are recyclable or reusable, but just not in Curb It! Check out our Recycling Guide for options to ensure these materials get reused or recycled and not landfilled.

See the Process

Tours are offered from spring to fall. Sign up for an upcoming Recycling Tour.

Where Do Recyclables Go?

Wonder where your items go? It varies, but most items are reused to make a similar type of product. Below is just a few of the places where your recyclables are reused.

Mixed Paper and Food/Beverage Cartons

Mixed paper goes to Minneapolis to make paperboard for General Mills cereal boxes, and to Valparaiso, Indiana as well as China to make corrugated boxes. 


Newspaper is shipped to Mexico and made into newsprint used in newspapers across Mexico. It's also used for specialty high grade paperboard cartons used in the U.S., Latin America and Europe cosmetic industries, as well as UPS overnight mailers.


Steel is recycled in Illinois and Indiana into rebar and structural steel such as industrial 2x4s for commercial buildings.


Aluminum is recycled in Tennessee and Alabama to make new beverage containers.


Glass is sent to Colorado, Oklahoma, Missouri and Indiana where it is remanufactured into new bottles for food and beverage containers and for products ranging from baby food jars to adult beverages.


Plastics go to a manufacturer in Alabama that makes car battery cases and paint containers, as well as other plastic parts for the auto industry. It's also sent to Georgia, North Carolina and Kentucky where it is turned into polyester blend clothing, carpeting and even green strapping used in shipping.