CARDBOARD food and drink cartons can now be included in household recycling collections in Cherwell district.

The items can be added to recycling boxes thanks to a new contract between Cherwell District Council and waste firm UPM.

The company’s facilities can strip apart the separate cardboard, plastic film and metal linings that make up the drink containers so they can then be recycled.

Council lead member for clean and green Nigel Morris said: “More and more items can now go into kerbside recycling.

“We can take most types of plastic container, drinks cartons, and even batteries can now be left on top of the bin in a plastic bag for collection.

“But there are a number of items we cannot collect from homes including polystyrene, textiles and glass.”

“These can often be recycled elsewhere, at our recycling banks or the Oxfordshire County Council household waste and recycling centres.

“Hopefully in years to come, we will be able to included these items in our kerbside scheme, but for the moment the technology does not allow this.”

The changes mean facilities for recycling the cartons will be removed at three recycling sites.

These are at Bodicote House Car Park, Bodicote; Sainsbury’s Car Park, Kidlington and the Co-op in Barberry Place, Bicester.

Deputy council leader George Reynolds said the authority had no plans to collect green waste, residual and packaging bins and boxes weekly.

He said: “We have 80 per cent satisfaction, I don’t think it would help.

“If people want to get rid of their food waste they can do it weekly but it just goes into the residual bin. We like them to do it fortnightly and we have had very few complaints about it being a problem.”

Meanwhile, those living in South Northamptonshire Council’s area will get weekly food waste collections from next summer.

It comes after the council was given £1.2m in Government cash as part of a nationwide drive to bring back weekly food collections.

  • Cherwell District Council collected more than three tonnes of the cartons at its recycling banks in 2011-12. It hopes this amount will increase significantly once residents can put the cartons out with their household recycling.

Last year, about a third of all cartons produced were recycled while one in four local authorities take the items.

Cherwell’s waste will be taken to UPM’s recycling facility in Cheshire for recycling.

The council said every 1,000kg recycled saves 750kg of carbon dioxide  equivalent compared with dumping the material in landfill sites.