How to Recycle in Boston, MA

Like any and most big cities Boston has a specific set of rules, and regulations which a recycler must abide by in order to recycle successfully. Many things that are recyclable include the following.

Paper Products such as
Newspapers (with inserts)
Phone Books/ Paperback books
Junk Mail (Please remove free samples)
White & Colored Paper Bags/ Brown Bags (grocery store)
Flattened BoxBoard (e.g. Cereal boxes/department store boxes)
Milk Cartons (Flattened)

Containers and similar products
Glass Bottles/Jars – Labels may stay. No broken glass or light
bulbs, dishes, glasses, Pyrex, window or auto glass.
Tin & aluminum food and soda cans, aluminum foil, pie plates, jar lids –Remove lids. Labels may stay.
All plastic containers –Caps & lid may stay. No motor oil or chemical containers.
juice & soy milk boxes.
DO NOT RECYCLE Plastic Shopping Bags

Recycling on Proper Trash Day – In Boston the rules are pretty simple:

Take your Blue Box, paper and cardboard out to the curb before 7 am on your trash day or put out the night before after 5 pm. If your trash is
picked up two times per week, take your Blue Box and paper out on the first trash day. If your trash is picked up three times a week, take your Blue Box and paper out on the middle trash day. The items listed above will be collected and recycled.

If your Blue Box wasn’t picked up -Call the Sanitation Division at 617-635-7573, Monday through Friday, 7:30 am to 3 pm. Or call 617-
635-4959, 3 to 5 pm.

If you move…
Please leave your Blue Box behind for the next resident.

Blue Box Wrong Size?
Use any plastic box similar in size or smaller. For a free
recycling sticker to identify box, call 617-635-4959.

For Additional & Further Information on Recycling in Boston, MA

Visit the city of Boston website at For more info call 617-635-4959 or 617-635-7574