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Recycling Processing
The Materials Recovery Facility
The Materials Recovery Facility uses technology to sort the paper, plastic, cans, and glass collected at residential homes and apartments and condos in San José. A system of belts, screens, electromagnets, and blasts of air separate paper, plastics, glass, aluminum, and other materials.

Recovering organic waste
At the Materials Recovery Facility, organic materials are recovered from garbage for composting. That means food waste and organic materials that are put in the garbage are composted without being separated by residents, and none of this material goes straight to the landfill. Compost made from recovered organic material in residential garbage is used for landscape and median projects.

Even though San José residential food waste is composted, it’s still important to avoid wasting food in the first place. Get food waste reduction tips and tricks.

Help protect workers' health and safety
In addition to the technology at this facility, workers also separate materials by hand. Remembering to correctly dispose of your recyclables helps protect these workers' health and safety: please do not place needles, chemicals, or propane tanks in the recycling cart.

Most of the sorted materials are made into big blocks called bales before being sold as resources for new products.

Check out the video below (or via GreenWaste's site) to see one of San José’s Material Recovery Facilities - the GreenWaste Facility - in action! 


Interested in learning more about a Materials Recovery Facility? Contact California Waste Solutions at or GreenWaste Recovery at