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Do You Know What Paper Items to Recycle at Home?

Let’s do a quick survey – how many trash bins do you have in your home? Now, how many recycling bins do you have? Odds are, one of these numbers is greater than the other. Why is that? You’re likely throwing away paper products or packaging that can be recycled.

Recycling doesn’t have to start and stop in the kitchen. Many household paper products and packaging commonly located in the bathroom, office or even right at your front door can be recycled.

Always be sure to check the local recycling guidelines in your area. And, when in doubt, throw it out. Common household paper items and materials that are recycled at paper mills across the country include:

Think before you throw: Paper Recycling at Home. Recycling does not have to stop and start in the kitchen.


  • Paper tubing from toilet paper
  • Paper packaging used for a toothpaste box, bar soap box or tissue box
  • Boxes used for over-the counter-medicine


  • White and colored paper
  • Notebooks
  • Note cards
  • Magazines
  • Letters without sensitive information

Front Door:


  • Paper packaging from food items such as cereal or pasta boxes
  • Milk or juice cartons
  • Paper shopping bags from retail stores or restaurants
  • Tubing from paper towel rolls
  • Pizza boxes

What Can You Do?

Wishcycling is when we put something in the recycling bin hoping it will be recycled. That disrupts the recycling process. But always think before you throw.

Watch as industry experts walk you through the recycling process.

Want to learn more about recycling? See all of our Recycling Q&As.

The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) serves to advance U.S. paper and wood products manufacturers through fact-based public policy and marketplace advocacy. The forest products industry is circular by nature. AF&PA member companies make essential products from renewable and recyclable resources, generate renewable bioenergy and are committed to continuous improvement through the industry’s sustainability initiative —Better Practices, Better Planet 2030: Sustainable Products for a Sustainable Future. The forest products industry accounts for approximately 5% of the total U.S. manufacturing GDP, manufactures about $350 billion in products annually and employs about 925,000 people. The industry meets a payroll of about $65 billion annually and is among the top 10 manufacturing sector employers in 43 states. Visit AF&PA online at or follow us on Twitter @ForestandPaper