That's why the toothbrush shouldn't be put in the yellow bin!

Empty yoghurt pots, soup cans, milk cartons and toothpaste tubes can be disposed of in the yellow bin (or yellow sack).

But why isn't the toothbrush allowed in the yellow sack? 🧐

Technically, that wouldn't actually be a problem since almost all plastic items are recyclable .
The reason toothbrushes are not allowed in the yellow bag has to do with funding and responsibility for disposal . The disposal of packaging is the task of the "dual system". Household waste, i.e. residual, organic and paper waste, on the other hand, is the task of the city and the municipalities.

Dual system?

The "dual system" is a privately organized take-back system. The manufacturers of packaging have to pay fees to one of the disposal companies for their disposal, for example to “Der Grüne Punkt”. After all, the manufacturers are also responsible for their design.

However , non-packaging made from the same material (toothbrushes, plastic bowls, etc.) are excluded from the dual system. The explanation: "For products such as toothbrushes, spatulas made of plastic, plastic bowls and ballpoint pen cases, there is no product responsibility for waste management," said a spokesman for the Federal Environment Agency. No company has to or wants to pay for the disposal costs.

Some municipalities reach an agreement with the dual system that non-packaging waste and packaging waste can be disposed of together in the yellow bin in their areas. You bear the costs of disposal of non-packaging made of the same material.

And how do I know if I'm allowed to dispose of toothbrushes via the yellow sack in my town?

This is often noted on the respective yellow bins or yellow sacks. If not, then it is best to ask the relevant municipality.
In Berlin, for example, residents are allowed to dispose of their toothbrushes with packaging. This also applies in Hamburg under certain conditions: the rubbish must not be too large and must consist of at least 50% plastic and/or metal. It is also allowed in Leipzig, Potsdam, Frankfurt and Heidelberg. 👍

It's not allowed in my town, so where does the toothbrush go?

In the residual waste.

There are also a variety of sustainable alternatives to toothbrushes. The most popular is the bamboo toothbrush, which is disposed of in the organic waste bin after use .

Furthermore, there are now also degradable dental floss, which is in a glass container. The same applies to toothpaste, which is also available in glass jars and can then be disposed of in glass waste.

You can do without plastic waste completely. 😊

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