Reduce / Reuse / Recycle

The three 'R's for 'reduce, reuse, recycle' are essential in cutting waste. Reducing is about trying to reduce the amount of waste you produce, as this is the best way to help the environment. Reusing is for finding a new way to use items to avoid throwing them away. Recycling enables waste materials that you would throw away to be used to make new products that can be sold again.

View this interactive map which highlights community projects within Perth and Kinross focussing on Reducing, Reusing, Repairing and Recycling.

Circular Economy Image

In order to tackle waste, you should consider your own consumption habits. Waste can be reduced in several ways and means there is less to consider reusing or recycling. Ways to reduce waste include:

  • Buy only the amount of food you need for the week. Think about the meals you would like to make and how many people will be eating them
  • Plan and write a list of meals you would like to make for the week
  • Prepare a shopping list to avoid over-buying
  • Store food correctly using the guidance on the food label. This will keep your food safe and will make it last longer
  • Consider portion sizes to reduce cost and waste

Visit the Waste Less Save More page for more information on reducing food waste.

Love Food Hate Waste can provide inspiration on where to start your food reduction journey.

We are conditioned to think of things that are old, worn, or broken as useless and so we throw them away with little regard to the environmental consequences. We need to learn to see that materials can be reused. Ways to reuse materials include:

  • Buying second hand, local network of reuse and charity shops
  • Cutting up old towels and sheets to use as dust cloths
  • Sheets of paper that have only been used on one side can be used for notetaking
  • Give unwanted clothing to friends
  • Reuse wrapping paper and bags for gifts
  • Reupholster out-of-date furniture to give it a new look
  • Reuse accreditation through Revolve for purchasing pre-loved goods
  • Reusable everyday items such as cups, water bottles, period products, bags, etc

Perth & Kinross Council provide a variety of recycling services. There are four different bins for different purposes, all with a different coloured lid. To check when each bin is to be emptied, see

Grey Bin

With the new recycling arrangements commencing, blue bins will accept paper and cardboard only and the new grey-lidded recycling bins will accept plastics, cans and cartons. Please see the exceptions in the FAQs below for those who have not yet received a letter or grey-lidded bin.

The new grey-lidded bins will also accept two new materials, soft plastics and foils.

Soft plastics and foil have never been recycled at the kerbside before in Perth and Kinross. This is great news as these materials currently make up around 9% of your general waste bin by weight and even more by volume, due to the materials being so light.

Blue Bin

The blue-lidded bin is for paper and cardboard. Further guidance can be found here Blue bin - Perth & Kinross Council (

Brown Bin - Food and Garden Waste

The brown-lidded bin is for food and garden waste. Access to this bin service depends on where you live.

All households with a brown bin can use this to recycle all cooked and uncooked food waste, without charge, including: dairy, eggs, meat and fish including bones, tea bags, coffee grounds, bread, pastries, cakes, fruit, vegetables, rice and pasta.

If you have signed up to the Chargeable Garden Waste Collection Service, you will also be able to recycle garden waste together with food waste in your brown bin. For more information, or to register and pay, visit our Chargeable Garden Waste Service pages. For residents who are not registered with this service, food waste on its own can be placed in the brown bin.

If you want to dispose of your garden waste without signing up to the permit, you can do this at your local Recycling Centre free of charge or by composting at home. Zero Waste Scotland provide an easy step by step guide on how to compost at home. By composting at home it saves money, saves resources, reduces carbon emissions and helps improve garden soil. Learn more about the benefits of composting at home.

To safely recycle your food waste, take heed of the following advice:

  • Line your kitchen caddy with a compostable liner, newspaper or place your food in loose.
  • Transfer all cooked and uncooked food waste into the kitchen caddy. Remember to remove food from packaging.
  • When the caddy is nearly full, empty the contents into your brown-lid bin. It is essential to make sure you remove all packaging from your food waste before putting it in the brown bin, especially plastic.

If your kitchen caddy is lost or broken, residents on the food and garden waste recycling service can pick one up for free from several convenient locations.

Green Bin

The contents of your green-lidded waste bin (non-recyclable general waste) ) is sent to an Energy from Waste facility. Where possible, householders are encouraged to use all recycling facilities available to them. This could be using the blue or brown collection services, or by using local Recycling centres and points.

There are a few items that are really easy to collect separately ensuring they are recycled including batteries, empty glass bottles, jars, old textiles and shoes, small/large waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE). Visit to find your nearest Recycling Point (to walk or cycle to) or Recycling Centre (to drive to).

It is illegal to fly-tip unwanted items – you could be fined for fly-tipping, even if a removal service you hire fly-tips your items. It’s bad for the environment and is an eye-sore. If you have large items to get rid of, follow these steps:

Can it be re-homed to someone else? If your item is in good condition, maybe a friend could have it, you could donate it to a Charity Shop or Reuse Project ( or you could offer it for reuse on Freecycle, Freegle or Gumtree.

If it has reached the end of its life, recycle it or dispose of it correctly by either:

  • Contacting Perth & Kinross Council to arrange and pay for a Bulky Uplift (from the kerbside)
  • Taking the item to a Recycling Centre free of charge. Find your nearest Recycling Centre (to drive to) at
  • Remember, if you decide to hire a private contractor, ensure they are registered as a Waste Carrier. If they end up fly-tipping your waste, you will be responsible for the fine.

If you are driving to a Recycling Centre in a van or a vehicle with a trailer, check first for information about how to do this.