Unacceptable Items & Contaminants

Not everything belongs in your organic waste bin. Tossing items like plastic bags, dirt, rocks, glass and metals can damage equipment at the composting or anaerobic digestion facility and pose a danger to workers. Other common items to avoid placing in your green organic waste bin include:

  • Dirt, soil, rocks, and concrete
  • Hazardous waste
  • Styrofoam
    • Large foam blocks can be placed in your recycling bin
  • Plastic or wax-coated paper or to-go containers
  • Diapers
  • Pet waste and kitty litter
  • Plastic, glass, or metal
    • Bottles, cans, and containers can be placed in your blue recycle bin. Learn more here.
  • Cigarette butts


Click the buttons below to learn about the various materials that can be placed in the Organics Bin:


Have a recycling question? Email Recycle@sdcounty.ca.gov or Call the Recycling Hotline: