Garbage and Recycling in Zurich

Zurich city is a clean city and it has a good waste disposal and recycling system in place. To begin with, understand what can be binned and what can composted and what can be recycled. Citizens of Zurich pay for their waste disposal, by buying special garbage disposal bags called ‘Zuri sacks’.

The Zurich Satdt has the Entsorgung Recycling department that handles all the day to day garbage, compost, recycling. Every year in December, the departments sends the yearly recycling calendar dates for your area/zipcode , the calendar can also be downloaded from the website. The calendar includes paper and cardboard recycling collection dates in the area, the dates the e-tram and cargo trams comes to the area.  The department also encloses free vouchers for bulk disposal of items.

The Sauberes app is also available for finding out dates for recycling collection.

House-hold garbage should be binned in special ‘Zuri Sacks’ (white garbage bags from the Stadt), these are available in sizes 18, 35, 60 and 110 litres in most supermarkets (ask at the till, they are not stocked in the shelves) and in the Postoffice. The gray collection bins are to be used for this garbage disposal.

Vegetable peels, food waste can be composted, these go into the  green bins. Bio-degradable bags in a couple of sizes are available at the supermarkets and can be used to collect and drop the waste in the green bins.

Plastic bottles & batteries can be dropped in special bins at supermarkets like Coop and Migros.

Glass and metal can be recycled in specific areas within the city. Glass is separated by colour into white, green etc.

These are collected once a month and fortnightly, they can be left outside the house on designated days. The Stadt calendar gives the dates based on the area you reside in.

These are collected once every 3 months,  a plastic bag comes in the post and old clothes & shoes (in decent- usable condition) can be left outside the house on the designated days in these special bags.

Other big things like furniture, mattresses, old pots and pans etc – there is a cargo tram that comes once a month to a designated point in the area for a few hours. The Calendar has the dates, you will need to drop them off yourself.

Electrical appliances – there is a e-tram that comes once a month to a designated point in the area for a few hours. The Calendar has the dates, you will need to drop them off yourself.

The Stadt sends free vouchers per.year for bulk disposal of household items at the two recycling yards in the city –  Recycling yard Hagenholz & Recycling yard Werdhölzli.

There are a few avenues for finding a new home for furniture, kid’s clothes, toys, books etc either free or sale:
1. The ‘English Forum’, the ‘Zurich second hand Facebook page’ are two places to advertise items you want to either give away or sell.
2. Brockehaus : these are places to give away things that are in good condition.
3. You can also leave the things outside the house with a Gratis sign.