New Kerbside Standardisation - Guidelines

Waste Minimisation

Changes to wheelie bin collections following Ministry for the Environment decision.

The Ministry for the Environment has made changes to what councils throughout the country are allowed to collect in their wheelie bins, which will mean some changes for Timaru District residents.

The new changes are part of the Government’s move to standardise recycling and organics across New Zealand from February 1.

The main changes affecting Timaru District are:

-       No paper or cardboard in the GREEN bin. This includes:

  • Pizza boxes and egg cartons – if clean can go in the YELLOW bin.
  • Tea bags and coffee filters – go in RED bin.
  • Paper towels, serviettes or tissues – go in RED bin.
  • Newspaper – goes in the YELLOW Bin
  • ‘Compostable’ marked paper packaging such as coffee cups – go in RED bin.
  • Pet Poo – goes in the RED bin.

-       No aluminium foil or aerosol cans in the YELLOW bin – they now go in RED bin.

-       No plant pots in the YELLOW bin – they go in the RED bin.

What is changing?

From 1 February, materials collected from households for recycling will be standardised across New Zealand.

Only these things can be recycled from home:

  • plastic bottles, clear plastic trays and plastic containers numbered 1, 2 and 5 only
  • food and drink tins and cans
  • paper and cardboard
  • glass bottles and jars

Why are these changes happening?

  • From 1 February 2024, the government, led by Ministry for the Environment, are introducing new national standards to kerbside bin collections, so now most Kiwis can sort their recycling, organics and rubbish in the same way.
  • Collecting the same materials in kerbside recycling services will make it easier for everyone to put items in the right bin no matter where they are in New Zealand.
  • It will also help businesses to design and manufacture packaging they know can be recycled from anywhere in the country.
  • The changes will also help recycling facilities by improving the quality of the materials they receive, so they can recycle more.

For more information on the changes to standardise household recycling, visit:,Gazette%20on%2013%20September%202023

What items can go into my recycling bin?

  • Plastic bottles, clear plastic trays and containers numbered 1, 2 and 5 only (larger than a yoghurt pottle and smaller than 4 litres)
  • Food and drink tins and cans
  • Paper and Cardboard, including clean pizza boxes

Remember to give your bottles, tins, cans and containers a rinse, and put all lids in the red bin.

What items can go into my organics bin?

  • Food scraps, skins and cores
  • Vegetable scraps, peelings and stalks
  • Cooked food
  • Breads, grains and pasta
  • Dairy
  • Egg shells
  • Meat and fish bones
  • Coffee grounds and loose tea leaves
  • Indoor-cut flowers
  • Garden Waste – excluding cabbage tree leaves and flax leaves
  • Grass clippings

Why can i no longer recycle empty aerosol cans?

When not completely empty, aerosols can explode under pressure and cause fires at recycling facilities.

Some aerosols contain poisonous contents such as insecticides and automotive sprays.

Staff at recycling facilities may be exposed to these contents when aerosols are damaged or crushed for baling.

Why can't pizza boxes go into the green bin?

Empty pizza boxes can be placed in recycling. Ministry for the Environment has provided advice that paper and cardboard items can introduce pollutants into soil such as inks that include heavy metals and/or microplastics.

For more information on what goes in each bin, please see the brochure below

Last updated: 07 Jun 2024