City of Red Wing

Sorting Recyclables

Fiber Products

All fiber products such as newspapers, cardboard, office paper, colored paper, inserts, catalogs, shiny paper, envelopes without glossy windows and magazines may be combined together in a paper bag or a separate recycling container.

Cardboard boxes must be broken down, flattened and folded or cut into sections of not more than three feet, then bundled together. This is done to maximize the volume of fibers that can be hauled in the recycling truck, and minimize the number of trips the truck must take to empty the recyclable materials.


  • Gift Wrap & Wrapping Paper - This is often printed with too much colored or metalic ink, which will contaminate the batch of new paper pump and greatly increase the amount of "bleaching agent" necessary to whiten the pulp to produce paper.
  • Wet Strength, Poly/Wax Coated Paper such as milk cartons, paper plates and paper cups cannot be recycled because with chemicals that do not break down at the same rate as non-coated paper.
  • Paper Towels, and Napkins - These items have been made from recycled paper, and the fibers are so short they are not suitable for making new paper products.


  • Moving Boxes, Shoe Boxes, Cereal Boxes and other Cardboard Boxes - Cardboard can be recycled into new currogated cardboard, boxboard, puzzles and things such as egg cartons.
  • Magazines, Catalogs, Phone Books, Flyers - These items are recycled into items such as food/gift boxes, tissue paper, game boards and greeting cards.
  • News Print, Scrap Paper, Greeting Cards, Paper Bags, Shredded Paper and similar papers - These items are mixed with other grades of paper and used to make newspaper, paperboard, puzzles, wallboard, gift/food boxes, cellulose insulation and animal bedding. 

Rigids - Plastic, Aluminum, and Tin

Rigid products such as Plastics, aluminum and tin cans may be combined in a separate container or paper bag.

The Red Wing Curbside Collection Program only accepts plastic (#1 & #2), aluminum and tin food and beverage type containers. Unacceptable Plastic or tin items can either be thrown in with your regular trash, or brought to the Red Wing Solid Waste Boiler Facility. Drop-off sites can accept all aluminum types.

Please make sure your containers are clean.


  • Aluminum Beverage Cans - Aluminum cans are shredded, cleaned, melted and mixed with a pure aluminum base, then recast into new aluminum products.
  • Tin Beverage and Food and Coffee Cans - These are remade into tinplate containers or used to make new cans for food products, paint, aerosol cans and other materials.
  • Plastic Beverage Bottles, Milk Jugs, Laundry Containers, Ketchup Bottles and Shampoo Bottles - Plastics with Codes #1 or #2 are recycled into carpet, clothing, strapping, tennis balls, drainage pipe, film, pallets, picnic lumber for picnic tables and decks, and other bottles.These containers should have a neck smaller than the base of the container to be considered recyclable here.


  • Plastic Swimming Pools, Tricycles and Toys - These item are often too large for curbside collection. In addition, they are made of a variety of plastics and other materials that would need to be separated prior to recycling.
  • Plastic Bags - While these are often made from recycled plastic, we are unable at this time to recycle them. One reason is because the different types of plastic bags are made from different materials. Different plastics melt at different temperatures which in turn affects how the plastic resin is recycled. In addition, there is currently not a market for plastic bags.
  • Deli Containers, Motor Oil bottles, and Glad type or Rubbermaid Containers - Different processes are used to make different containers, different plastics melt at different temperatures and all this affects how the plastic resin is recycled. Often this type of container is made by injection molding with a different formula.
  • Styrofoam - Simply, this is NOT A PLASTIC ITEM even if there is a number on the container. The only means of disposal of styrofoam containers is in your regular household garbage.


Clear, brown and green/blue glass bottles and jars can be recycled. However, prior to placing them out for collection, you need to remove all caps and lids. Residents are no longer required to sort glass by color.  All colors of glass food & beverage bottles can be placed together in your recycling bin.  We have been able to identify new markets that will accept mixed glass for recycling. 


  • Ceramic - This has a higher melting temperature than glass, so when mixed in with reclclable glass the ceramic pieces become embeded in new glass resulting in defective and unacceptable new containers.
  • Window Glass, Light Bulbs, Cosmetic Bottles, Crystal, Dishes, Drinking Glasses, Mirrors and Ovenware - These items often have other elements in the glass such as metals which could result in unacceptable new containers.


  • Beverage Bottles, Glass Sauce Containers or Food Containers and Wine & Liquor Bottles - These types of glass containers are crushed into a material called cullet and made into new food or beverage containers


The Goodhue County Recycling Center is no longer accepting textiles. Textiles are not collected in the city’s curbside service. The Salvation Army and Annadee's Closet will accept clean and undamaged clothing for donation.  There are also Red Boxes in various locations around Red Wing that residents and drop off textiles.


Alkaline (long life) batteries and Zinc-Carbon (heavy-duty) batteries should be disposed of in the regular trash. These two types are not hazardous and do not need to be collected for recycling.

Alkaline and Zinc-Carbon (heavy-duty) batteries make up over 90% of household and office batteries used. These batteries no longer contain trace amounts of heavy metals, as they once did. These batteries have been hazard free since the mid-seventies. Our department collected these types for many years to keep any older stockpiles out of the waste stream. Disposal of these batteries came at considerable cost to the taxpayer. We now feel that Alkaline and Zinc-Carbon (heavy-duty) batteries no longer pose a reasonable threat to the environment. The City Recycling Crews do not collect batteries any longer.

NiCad lithium and button batteries can be disposed of by contacting Goodhue County Recycling Center.


Televisions, Computers, Computer Monitors, DVD Players, VCRs, CD Players, Stereo's, Phones, Modems, Cable Boxes, Scanners, Paper Shredders, Satellite Dishes, Webcams, Answering Machines, DVR's, Printers, Fax Machines and Copiers can be disposed of for a charge at one of the following Locations:

Goodhue County Recycling Center (651-385-3109 or 651-385-3105)
Integrated Solid Waste Management Campus (651-385-3658)

We are not aware of any location in Red Wing accepting electronics free of charge. 

As of September 1, 2010 the electronics items listed above are banned from Wisconsin Landfills (  CRT's (Cathode Ray Tubes) have been banned from disposal with mixed solid waste in Minnesota since July 1, 2006.  Items most often containing CRT's are TV's and Computer Monitors. (Minn. Stat 115A.9565)

CRTs are considered the largest single source of lead in Minnesota's municipal waste, containing 5-8 pounds of lead per unit. Lead makes up approximately 20% of each CRT. The ban will keep toxic lead out of landfills and will increase the amount of materials being recycled.

Electronic Recycling Events:

Responsibly recycle unwanted or broken electronics and appliances at our annual e-waste event at the City of Red Wing's Solid Waste Campus in partnership with Proact Services,   Items accepted either Free or at Reduced Rates include:  

Flat Screen Monitors/TVs
VCR/DVD Players
CRT Televisions - $15.00
Console Televisions - $25.00
Freon Appliances - $15.00

 This year's event is scheduled for:  Saturday, October 15th, 2016 - 8:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

Click here for more details