You can now download a useful infographic that shows exactly what happens to all of the rubbish and recycling collected by Dorset Council.

We also have videos that explain what happens to our recycling, food waste and garden waste.

Where Dorset's materials go to be recycled

After kerbside recycling is collected, it is taken to be sorted and bulked up at various locations across the county.

Any materials that can't be recycled - either because they are too low quality or there isn't a market for them - are sent to an Energy from Waste (EfW) facility in the UK or Europe, where they are incinerated to generate electricity.

The table below shows where different recyclable materials are usually sent after they have been sorted but the destinations may change depending on capacity or most value for money on disposal costs.

Table of where Dorset's materials go to be recycled
Materials Where it goes What happens to it

Recresco, South Wales

URM (UK) Ltd

Sorted by colour and washed to remove any impurities. Crushed and melted, then moulded into new products such as bottles and jars.
Newspapers and pamphlets UPM Shotton, North Wales Newspaper and paper
Mixed paper and cardboard

UPM Kymmene UK Ltd

Recycled and turned into new paper and packaging material
Plastics UPM Kymmene UK Ltd Processed and remoulded into new plastic products or made into fuel to create energy
Food waste Eco Sustainable Solutions, Piddlehinton & Parley Dorset Anaerobic digestion, where food waste is used to create soil improver, compost and a renewable energy source
Garden waste

Eco Sustainable Solutions, Lodmoor Weymouth & Parley

Mark Farwell Composting, Stourpaine

Composted and used in horticulture

UPM Kymmene UK Ltd

Materials are separated using a wide variety of sorting and screen technology and then sold to a variety of outlets

What happens to items collected from household recycling centres and mini recycling banks?

Many items that cannot go in with kerbside collection can still be recycled; they just need to be taken to a household recycling centre (HRC) or a recycling bank at a car park.

The table below shows where materials collected at HRCs and recycling banks usually go but the destinations may change depending on capacity or most value for money on disposal costs.

Table of where materials collected at HRCs and recycling banks go
Materials Where it goes What happens to it
Batteries (car and pencil)

Envirowales Ltd

Ecobat Resources UK Ltd
Batteries are reprocessed with 95% of materials recycled.
Cardboard Visy Recycling Cardboard from HRC's in Dorset is recycled used to make packaging.
Cartons (e.g. Tetrapak) Sonoco Alcore paper mill in Stainland, West Yorkshire. Wood fibres used to make industrial-strength coreboard, made into tubes and cores, around which paper, man-made fibre yarns, and metal and plastic film for industrial applications are wrapped.
Clothing and textiles

Usman International (FZC)

Salvation Army Trading Company Ltd

Textiles are graded for reuse and also recycled to make industrial cleaning cloths/rags.

Electrical appliances

European Metal Recycling Ltd

Sweeep Kuusakoski Ltd

The appliances are crushed and sorted using magnets and hand sorting. Plastics, metals and glass are separated for recycling.
Fluorescent lighting Recolight

The mercury is used for lab and industrial uses.

The aluminium goes back to the metal market.

Glass is made into new light tubes.


European Metal Recycling Ltd

It is melted into aluminium and turned into foil and cans.

Fridges and freezers

European Metal Recycling Ltd

Metal and plastics are removed for recycling, CFC gases are incinerated and CFC free foam (degassed) is land-filled.
Garden waste ECO Sustainable Solutions Ltd, Hurn, Weymouth and Stourpaine Made into a nutrient rich compost and soil improver.


URM (UK) Ltd
Glass is re-melted and used to make new bottles and jars.
Scrap metal

European Metal Recycling Ltd

Smelted and turned into cars, aeroplanes, tin cans and other metal products.

Plasterboard Recycling Solutions Ltd

Gypsum is used for more plasterboard and in the composting process.
Rubble (inert hardcore and concrete) W&S Recycling Graded, washed, tumbled and re-marketed.

Sweeep Kuusakoski Ltd

Dismantled and plastic and metal recyclable parts are separated. Glass is treated to remove any hazardous components before being sent to be recycled.

Fraser Evans & Sons Ltd

Repurposed for use including carpet underlay, all-weather training areas for horses, playgrounds, rubber matting, sports and recreational surfaces.
Engine oil Slicker Recycling Ltd Re-processed which produces a high-quality base oil product which is a key component in the production of brand new carbon-efficient lubricating oil.
Vegetable oil

Future Industrial Services Ltd

Filtered and refined into bio diesel which can then be used for fuelling buses, cars and lorries that run on bio-diesel.
Wood and timber Eco Sustainable Solutions, Dorset Shredded and separated into various grades for chip board, biomass fuels (energy recovery) and equestrian products.