Zagreb Blog

How to Recycle Tetra Pak Packaging in Zagreb?

By 29 March 2017

I admit I’ve been doing it wrong.

I am a somewhat eco-conscious citizen, trying as hard as possible to recycle, rather than just throwing everything in the garbage (of course, recent changes in the garbage collection in Zagreb didn’t go unnoticed). I have a large bin in my yard where we make our own compost (and use it after a year or so!), I have been recycling paper and glass ever since it became possible in Zagreb, and since they started installing more and more plastic bins I have been trying to separate and recycle plastic as well. Of course, plastic bottles are one of those things that have the high ratio of recycling in Croatia, because you get the infamous 50 lipa per bottle, in our house as well.

So, what was I doing wrong? Tetra Pak. I’ve been trying to recycle those, and I seemed to remember having read somewhere that you should put your used Tetra Pak packaging in the bins for paper. Well, no. Today I googled that quite a bit and it came apparent that I am not completely wrong: formerly, when the city of Zagreb had an older system of recycling, you were supposed to put Tetra Pak in the paper bins. Previously we used to have more bell-shaped paper bins around the town, and those were clearly labelled to explain that Tetra Pak (or, rather, any paper-based packaging with C-PAP mark on it) should be recycled in them. Those are, however being discontinued, and the new paper-bins, with blue tops are being distributed to the households around the city. And those are not where you’re supposed to put your milk or juice carton.

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So where are you supposed to put them? Well, it’s not what you’d expect, let me tell you: these days in Zagreb Tetra Pak goes to the plastic bins! The ones with the yellow tops, and they do have that written on them (at least the bigger ones do, I haven’t been able to confirm if the label says that on the smaller bins as well). And yes, they take plastic and metal waste, as clearly written on them (in Croatian, of course). You can find all of this information on Čistoća’s web site, along with the codes for the type of waste to be recycled in each specific type of bin.

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I won’t be doing it wrong any more, and hopefully neither will you!