Can you recycle the K-Cup plastic pods? I remove the grounds for the garden but would like to recycle the pod. Any input?
K-Cups, Keurig’s single-serving coffee pods, are made of multiple components, including an aluminum foil lid, a fiber/plastic blend filter, and a #7 plastic exterior. As with other mixed-material items, the materials would need to be separated before they could be processed. Keurig acknowledges that K-Cups are not recyclable at this time but notes that they intend for them to be fully recyclable by 2020.
In the meantime, Keurig also produces Vue cups made of #5 plastic, which is more widely accepted by recycling programs. Vue cups are also accepted by Preserve’s Gimme 5 mail-in recycling program, and shipping is free. However, Vue cups may not be used by K-Cup brewers, and they may not yet be compatible with newer Keurig machines.
Until recyclable K-Cups are developed, and if you are a K-Cup superuser, consider using a Recycle A Cup cutter to separate K-Cups for recycling. Recycle A Cup also accepts the plastic shells for recycling if your local recycling facility doesn’t accept #7 plastic. Shipping details can be found on their website.
When in doubt, try repurposing the plastic cups for storage or crafts. You can find fun ideas for your leftover K-Cups here.