April 22, 2022
paper, plastic and glass containers

If we really want to take responsibility for our environment and our planet, we should consider recycling more seriously and pay more attention to waste management. We’ll be able to see the results only if we manage our waste properly. On the other hand, we need to be aware of the fact that not all materials can be recycled, and it is important to think about what type of products and packaging we buy. Nowadays one can find plenty of alternatives for products that come without packaging. For example, when it comes to cosmetic/hygiene products you can look for so-called naked products - there are soap bars, solid hair hair shampoos and solid hair conditioners. Even when it comes to food products, there are alternative shops (here are some recommendations for Split and Zagreb) where you can buy teas, nuts, grains and flours without plastic packaging - you can even bring your own reusable jar, weigh the product and bring it home with you! Some stores even encourage this sustainable type of shopping, such as Greencajg store in Zagreb where you can get a 10% discount when you bring your own jar or produce bags 🙂

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In 2020 Croatia has reduced the amount of municipal waste and it has increased waste separation and recycling rate, but the results are still far from the targeted ones. When the first International Earth day was celebrated back in 1970. a mobius loop of arrows was introduced as a symbol for recycling. Today this symbol indicates that the packaging (or sometimes even the product itself) can be recycled. If you want to support recycling in Croatia, here is a guide on how to properly recycle in Croatia.

Blue containers are used for storing paper waste. They will often be entirely colored in blue, or simply have blue lids with papir (Croatian for “paper”) written on them. Here’s what you can dispose in blue paper containers:

  • Newspapers, magazines, catalogs, brochures
  • Books, notebooks, telephone directories, postcards
  • writing/computer paper, letters, paper bags
  • Carton maps and files, carton bags (without sticky tape, styrofoam and plastic wrap)

What you must not dispose in blue paper containers:

  • Carbon paper, photos and photo-paper
  • Oily and greasy paper, diapers, gummed labels

Brown containers are for bio-waste (Croatian: biootpad). Here is a list of all types of waste you can dispose in a brown bio-waste container:

  • Kitchen waste (fruit and vegetable peels, egg shells, coffee ground, teabags, bread leftovers, lettuce/kale/cabbage leaves)
  • Gardening or “green” waste (wither flowers, branches, dried leaves, swath of greens, soil from plant pots, fruit and vegetable leftovers)
  • Small amounts of other bio-waste (hair, bark, sawdust, pine needles, paper tissues)

What you must not dispose in brown bio-waste containers:

  • Leftovers of heat-processed food
  • Meat, fish, skin, bones
  • Dairy products, oils and fats
  • Ashes, packaging (carton, glass, plastic), gum/rubber, hazardous waste
  • Painted and polished or varnished wood
  • Clothes, cigarettes etc.
mixed communal waste and paper containers

Green containers are used only for disposing of glass packaging (bottles, jars etc.) - in Croatian: staklo. You can not dispose the following items in a green container:

  • Window glass, car glass, crystal and optical glass, reinforced and wired glass, laboratory glass
  • Light bulbs and fluorescent lights
  • Porcelain and ceramic objects

Straight glass windows can be disposed of at civic amenity sites.

Yellow containers are used for disposing of plastic (in Croatian: plastika). Here is a list of items you can dispose in yellow containers:

  • Polyethylene bags, foils, films, bubbly packaging, packaging that contains the following marks: PE-HD, PE-LD, PET, PP
  • Edible oil bottles, distillate water bottles, cleaning supplies packaging, cosmetics and medication packaging (except cytostatic medicine), plastic food packaging, any plastic packaging that is marked with PE- HD, PE-LD, PP
  • Plastic cups and yogurt cups, any plastic packaging marked with PS or PP
  • Food packaging made of foamy polystyrene, sometimes marked with EPS
  • Milk carton (tetrapak), multi-layer packaging
  • Other plastic packaging: bottle caps, plastic plates, juice bottles, plastic cutlery - can be marked with PE-HD, PP, PVC, PS, PET
  • Food or drink cans

You must not dispose the following items in a yellow plastic container:

  • Plastic packaging that contains leftovers of motor oils, paint or varnish
  • Plastic packaging that contains leftovers of chemicals
  • Bottles and cans from flammable and/or explosive liquids
  • Pressurized bottles and cans (for example propane/butane bottles)
mixed communal waste and bio-waste containers

Textile and fabrics that are not reusable anymore can be disposed of in a textile container - you can usually find these at civic amenity sites. These containers are usually grey-coloured and have Croatian word tekstil written on them. Here is a list of items you can dispose in a textile/fabric recycling container:

  • Clothes, towels, sheets, curtains
  • Hats and caps
  • Bags and fabric toys
  • Other textile items

Here are some items you must not dispose in a textile container:

  • Shoes, leather bags
  • Feather pillows, duvets

Happy recycling!!

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