Recycling Center Tour

See Our State-of-the-Art Recycling Center in York PA

Located in York County, PA, Penn Waste’s innovative single stream recycling center is the foundation of the company’s commitment to waste less and preserve more. In 2018, more than 180,000 tons of recyclable materials, including cardboard, cartons, plastic, glass, metal cans and newspaper, passed through Penn Waste’s 96,000 square-foot recycling center on their way to being recycled, repurposed and reused. The facility was originally built in 2015 and has undergone several upgrades over the last 4 years. Most recently, Penn Waste added “MAX,” a robot which uses artificial intelligence to improve the recycling process.

Below is a list of the steps your recyclables take on the way to their final recycling destination. You can also check out our new video facility tour to learn more!

Watch the Video

The Beginning

Residents and businesses across South Central PA fill their recycling bins with recyclable materials such as newspaper, glass, plastic bottles, cartons and cardboard. No separating is needed. All materials are placed in a common collection box or bin, making recycling a breeze.

Penn Waste’s fleet of recycling trucks picks up the materials and heads toward the single stream processing facility in York County, PA. Upon arrival at the recycling center, the trucks are weighed before unloading their containers on the intake tipping floor.

The Sorting

After being unloaded, it’s time to separate and sort the materials into key categories:

  • Newspaper
  • Cardboard
  • Plastics
  • Cartons
  • Cans
  • Glass

High tech sorting machines carry items throughout the facility as they are sorted and prepared. Penn Waste employees serve vital roles in the recycling process, identifying and removing non-recyclable items by hand, inspecting materials, and ensuring the process runs efficiently.

After being sorted, items are bound, baled and prepared for shipping to their final recycling destinations.

The Final Destination

The items you recycle are shipped all over the country and the world to be recycled and reused in a variety of ways.

  • Some recyclables are used in carpet fibers, piping, more cans and containers, paper and much more.
  • In less than two days, a piece of cardboard that you’ve placed out for recycling can be picked up, processed and on a ship at the port of Baltimore, heading to its final destination.
  • Containers that hold cat litter are recycled for use in Mondo Blocks, which are used in guard rails to protect drivers on highways across the United States.

No matter where your recycling ends up, you can be sure your efforts are creating a positive impact on the environment.

Creating a Green Community Together

Working to create a green community together, Penn Waste encourages all of our residential and commercial customers to recycle. With just a few simple steps, by working together, we can drastically reduce the amount of waste being sent to landfills and take a giant leap forward in preserving our community and our planet for future generations.