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Green bin

Last Modified September 04, 2018

Recycle your food and garden waste



green-bin Week 1 black bin and blue box, Week 2 green bin and brown bin/black box






Your green bin is collected every fortnight on the same day as your brown bin or black box. See collections and calendar for details.

 Image of a kitchen caddy emptying food

Kitchen caddies and compostable liners

We provide kitchen caddies free of charge to help you collect food waste in the kitchen before taking it out to your green bin. You can line your kitchen caddy either with newspaper or our rolls of compostable liners that are available to buy at several outlets.  


To find out how you can save up to £700 a year by wasting less food check out our Making Food Waste History page and start planning ahead, storing correctly and only cooking what you need!



PLEASE NOTE: We can no longer accept the following items in the green bin:

  • paper (except shredded paper used for animal bedding or food wrapped in newspaper)
  • paper bags
  • kitchen towel
  • paper napkins/serviettes

You can put the following items in your green bin:  



a green tickFood   

food waste






a green tickTeabags, coffee grounds, eggshells       

 teabags and eggshells

Lea green tickaves, twigs and small branches   pile of leaves

 Including all bread, meat, fish, fruit, veg, bones and leftovers   Branches up to 150mm (6 inches) diameter

a green tickGrass/hedge cuttings

 leaves, twigs and grass cuttings


 a green tickShredded paper used for animal bedding or newspaper used to contain food only

 office paper





We can't possible list everything that can and cannot go in the bin so if in doubt, leave it out! Alternatively you can contact us to ask about a particular item.

The following cannot go in the green bin but the information below each picture gives an alternative bin or suggestion (HWRC = Household Waste Recycling Centre):


    a red crossCardboard/Cartons/washing powder boxes


             a red crossPlastic bags/
Black sacks

Plastic bags in a pile




 Black sacks

a red crossGlass, plastic, cans, polystyrene


 glass plastic

Brown bin Empty plastic bags can go in your brown recycling bin, black sacks should go in your black bin.  Glass, plastic and cans can go in your brown recycling bin, polystyrene should go in your black bin.

a red crossSoil/turf



     a red crossCat litter/dog poo 


a red crossTextiles and clothes


textiles and shoes

Plant material is fine but plants with soil attached are not. Please take to an HWRC (tip) Black bin HWRC (tip), local recycling sites or charity shops

       a red crossTreated wood

fence panelWooden chair

E.g. fence panels, furniture, doors, baskets

    a red crossRubble and building waste

E.g. stones, bricks  building rubble

a red cross Paper (except items mentioned in the 'yes please' table above).

   newspapers and magazinepaper bags                               

HWRC (tip) HWRC (tip) - but please contact first for guidance on amount accepted

Brown paper can go in your brown bin,

Wrapping paper and greetings cards should go in your black bin. Other paper goes in your blue box.

a red cross Kitchen towel/tissues a red cross Paper napkins/serviettes  

kitchen roll





paper napkins  
Black bin Black bin  

Frequently asked questions



Can I have more than one green bin?
No. However if you do have extra garden waste you can buy Garden waste sacks and up to three of these can be put out alongside your green bin collection.

Can I use compostable liners that I have bought from the supermarket in my kitchen caddy?
No. The liners we sell with the Hertsmere logo on are the only compostable bags we accept in the green bin. Unfortunately plastic bags and other liners such as some supermarket biodegradable or compostable bags cannot be accepted - they will be considered contamination and your bin will not be emptied. Please see kitchen caddies and compostable liners.

I've heard about garden waste sacks, where can I get them?
Please see Garden waste sacks for details. 

I want to try home composting, where can I get a bin?
Composting at home is a great way to reuse your own waste. We offer compost bins at a subsidised price.

What happens to everything I put in my green bin?
Please read What happens to my recycling? 

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