Wishcycling is the process of sticking an item in the recycling bin with hopes that it will be recycled and not sent to landfill. Without you knowing whether it can be recycled or not.

But this isn’t necessarily our fault.

According to a study carried out by Robinsons, 25% of us don’t fully understand what we can and cannot recycle. Added to the fact that not every council within the UK collect the same items for recycling, it is no wonder that there is a nationwide confusion.

The UK Government is, however, beginning to put plans in place to help make recycling that little bit easier. Soon the findings from the government’s consultation on ‘consistent collecting’ will be released, which should hopefully outline what can be recycled from your home, including Tetra Pak cartons.

The Government are also planning to introduce a plastic bottle and can return service, called the Deposit Return Scheme that should come into force after 2024.

So, what can we definitely not recycle?

Items that cannot be recycled include:

used nappies, drinking glasses, cassette tapes
and large items made from plastic, such as toys.

To check what can be recycled in your area, use Recycle Now’s website, all you have to do is type in the name of the item you would like to check can be recycled and then pop in your postcode. The site will then tell you if you can recycle at home, and where the nearest recycling centres are that will, if you can’t at home.

There are also many organisations that will take your old items such as Zapper, that will buy your unwanted books, games, CDs and DVDs. As well as shops such as Boots and Specsavers which will take back used items, such as cosmetics, glasses and contact lens packaging.

Some shops will also take back unwanted clothes to be passed on to those that need them, such as charity shops, or organisations that will take them to be recycled. For example, H&M have a Garment Collecting programme, where clothes are split into three categories, rewear, reuse and recycle.

It is important to remember that nearly everything can be recycled or reused, we just need to look for the appropriate means for this to happen.