What goes in your green bin

Organics recycling is an important part of the City of Ottawa’s long term Waste Strategy. Diverting residential organic waste away from landfill saves the City millions of dollars and reduces the need for additional landfill sites.

Your green bin is now being collected each and every week, 52 weeks a year.

Have a specific item? Check the Waste Explorer

Food waste or scraps

  • Baking ingredients, herbs and spices
  • Bread, cereals, crackers and grains
  • Candy and gum
  • Chips, popcorn and nuts
  • Coffee grounds and filters
  • Cookies, cakes, muffins and pastries
  • Dairy products (cheese, sour cream)
  • Dough
  • Eggs and egg shells
  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Jams, jellies, marmalades or chutney
  • Leftover cooking oils, lard, shortening, fat, butter and margarine
  • Meat, fish, shellfish, poultry, bones and scraps
  • Nuts and shells
  • Pasta, beans, rice and couscous
  • Peanut butter
  • Pet food
  • Pits (all types)
  • Salad dressing, mayonnaise, vinegar, sauces, marinades, dips and gravy
  • Seeds
  • Tea and tea bags

Yard waste

  • Branches, twigs and hedge trimmings
  • Leaves
  • Plants and weeds
  • Grass clippings

Other acceptable items

  • Animal bedding (e.g. bird and hamster cages)
  • Barbeque ashes
  • Butcher’s meat wrap
  • Cold fireplace ash
  • Cotton balls
  • Dryer lint
  • Floor sweepings, vacuum bags and vacuum contents
  • Food-soiled paper towels, napkins and tissues
  • Food-soiled pizza boxes only (clean pizza boxes should go in the black box)
  • Household plants, including soil
  • Kitty litter
  • Microwave popcorn bags
  • Paper coffee cups, plates and muffin wrappers
  • Pet fur, hair and feathers
  • Soiled paper, boxboard and cardboard
  • Sugar, flour and potato paper bags
  • Waxed paper, cardboard and cold drink cups
  • Wooden popsicle sticks and toothpicks

Not allowed in the green bin

  • Plastic bags of any kind (even the compostable varieties aren’t allowed)
    Plastic impedes the composting process and prevents the flow of air through the organic material, causing it to smell. It also reduces the quality of compost and increases the cost for processing. Plastic residue still needs to be disposed of after composting and increases the amount of material that must be screened out of compost and sent to the landfill.
  • Diapers and sanitary products (as they contain plastics)
  • Dog feces