several rows of empty plastic bottles

Recycling Programs for all County Residents

Pumpkin Recycling Program

Union County Holds Special “Beyond the Bin” Recycling Event This Fall

The Union County Board of County Commissioners will be holding a special recycling event called Beyond the Bin on Saturday, November 4th from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 the Union County Vocational Technical School in Scotch Plains. All residents are asked to bring all unwanted, acceptable items to the event.

“As part of my ‘Building a Stronger Union County’ initiative for this year, we continue searching for new ways to take accountability of our waste production and strengthen our recycling systems. Beyond the Bin was perfectly designed to make it remarkably easy for residents to recycle multiple items by having all articles collected on the same day, at one location” said Union County Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados. “Together, we are taking the necessary steps to becoming a more environmentally conscious and responsible community. I hope to see you all there.”

The County of Union understands that several challenges within the current recycling program still exist. Some residents may be unaware that certain items, like plastic film newspaper sleeves or an old fax machine or broken computer for instance, can be recycled. Others are unsure of where to take items to be recycled, and may end up throwing them in the trash. Furthermore, with New Jersey’s highly successful ban of single use plastic bags well underway, we now have a surplus of reusable cloth bags piling up in homes, cars, and garages that residents just don’t know what to do with.

Electronic waste, or e-waste, comprises approximately 70% of our overall toxic waste, but only 12.5% gets recycled. According to data reported on, e-waste climbed up 21% from 2014 to 2019 globally, with America taking second place on the list of the highest producers. With staggering numbers like these expected to climb in the coming years, a worldwide call to address the electronic waste problem and start recycling has been made.

Another staggering statistic is that the United States generates just over 17 million tons of textile (clothing/fabric) municipal solid waste per year, which is 5.8% of the total municipal solid waste (MSW) generation (2018 statistics, as per Instead of throwing this material in the trash, you can now give it a second life at this event.

Union County’s Beyond the Bin recycling event has partnered with the organizations MRMHelpsyWaste Management and GoaTote Inc. in the collection of the following items:

Covered Electronic Devices
Desktop or personal computers, computer monitors, portable computers, desktop fax machines, monitors, printers, tablets/e-readers, and televisions

Plastic Film
Clean, dry plastic bags, bubble wrap, Ziplock bags, dry-cleaning bags, newspaper sleeves, ice bags, cereal box liners, bread bags, produce bags, case overwrap (i.e. a case of bottled water)

Clothing/ Textiles
All textiles (Shirts, pants, skirts, sweaters, pajamas, jackets, winter coats, rain coats), shoes, accessories, handbags, backpacks, household linens, sneakers, boots, etc.

Reusable Shopping Bags (non-plastic)
Cloth, canvas, cotton, #5 woven and non-woven shopping bags

Food Waste Recycling
Produce, Meat, Fish and Poultry, Dairy, Bread, Pasta, Rice, Grains, Coffee Grounds


For residents interested in composting at home, we have partnered with BrandBuilders LLC in making backyard composters, rain barrels, and more available for purchase online and pick up at the event. For more information on composting materials for your home or to make a purchase, please visit us at

For a complete list of all acceptable items and materials for this event, please visit

Union County’s Beyond the Bin recycling initiative is brought to you by the Union County Board of Commissioners, in collaboration with the Union County Bureau of Recycling and Planning and the Union County Department of Public Works.

New Program to Address Reusable Bag Surplus

The Union County Board of County Commissioners is pleased to announce a new program aimed at addressing the surplus of reusable bags in our communities. As part of Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados’ “Building a Stronger Union County,” theme for 2023, this new environmental initiative is in collaboration with the Union County Bureau of Recycling and Planning, the Town of Westfield and the Housing Authority of the City of Elizabeth (HACE) are partnering with GOATote, Inc. to provide a solution to this issue.

“We are delighted to introduce this innovative program, which will address the surplus of reusable bags in our communities,” said Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados. “The County of Union is taking a proactive step towards sustainability and we aim to make a meaningful impact by repurposing these bags and ensuring they reach those in need. Together, we can create a more environmentally conscious and socially responsible community.”

Learn more about this program


how to recycle plastic film flyer
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free hazardous waste drop-off events for union county flyer
New Jersey Clean Communities Program

Contact the Union County Bureau of Recycling and Planning

Bureau of Recycling & Planning

Stuart Newman Bureau Chief
2325 South Avenue, Scotch Plains, NJ 07076

Phone: 908-654-9890

Fax: 908-789-3674