How to Recycle – Boston

Mixed Recycling

Tufts recently transitioned to mixed recycling. Please watch this video for more information about how to recycle or see a comprehensive list of accepted items at the bottom of the page.

Do not contaminate the recycling. Please follow these guidelines:

All paper, cardboard, plastic, metal, and glass items should be placed in the mixed recycling bin pictured below.

A central waste station.

A central waste station consisting of a trash bin (labeled “landfill”) and a recycling bin (labeled “mixed recycling”)

A desk-side waste station

A desk-side waste station consisting of a recycling bin and a trash buddy



  • Office paper: including white, colored and glossy paper (even with staples in it)
  • Magazines and catalogs
  • Envelopes (even with plastic windows)
  • Phone books
  • Clean paper bags
  • Empty coffee cups with the plastic lid
  • Clean paper plates
  • Asceptic containers, known as Tetra Paks
Do not recycle:

  • Paper towels
  • Soiled paper plates or to-go boxes with food on or inside
  • Waxy paper plates
  • Tissues
  • Dirty or soiled items



  • All corrugated and non-corrugated cardboard boxes (please break down boxes)
  • Juice or milk cartons
  • Tops of pizza boxes, clean of food waste
  • Frozen food paper boxes
  • Paperboard boxes like a cereal box
Do not recycle:

  • Greasy pizza box bottoms



  • All clean rigid plastic (wipe or rinse out food waste)
  • Takeout containers
  • Yogurt cups
  • Plastic bottles
Do not recycle:

  • To-go containers covered in food (rinse or wipe to recycle)
  • Filmy plastics (grocery bags, Ziplocs, and plastic wrap even if they have a recycling symbol on them)
  • Foil chip bags
  • Styrofoam
  • Bioplastics
  • Disposable gloves



  • Cans (before recycling, empty out the contents/liquid)
  • Aluminum foil products (including clean aluminum to-go containers)
  • Empty food and beverage containers
Do not recycle:

  • Other metal (e.g. coat hangers, pans, random metal objects).
    These items must be processed separately; submit a Maximo request if you have a large amount of metal to recycle.



  • Jars and bottles only (before recycling, empty out the contents/liquid). Any color of glass is accepted.
Do not recycle:

  • Pyrex
  • Broken glass
  • Lightbulbs (these go in the electronic waste bins)
  • Heat-resistant lab glass
  • Any type of glass that is not a jar or bottle