Recycling Revealed

RUMOR
The number on the bottom of a plastic cup, bottle or container tells you how to use a product or package.

STATUS
Nonsense!

ORIGINS
Although its origins are uncertain, this misconception has shown up in spurious media reports as well as a few misinformed websites.

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:

This rumor is false and potentially dangerous.

Many plastic items are marked with a resin ID code, usually a number (1 through 7) or a letter abbreviation, which indicates a particular type of plastic. The code is typically found on the bottom of a container and is often displayed inside a three-arrow recycling symbol. Resin ID codes are used to help identify different plastics for recycling, but they do not provide guidance on the safe or intended use of a product and should not be used for this purpose.

For reliable information on using a plastic product or package, be sure to consult the packaging label and any additional instructions that may be provided.

Things to remember:

  • Use a product or package according to the instructions provided.
  • Check the resin ID code and remember to recycle after use.

Note: Recycling facilities may not be available in all areas. Check to see if recycling facilities exist in your area.

 

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