What is a brown bin?

  • A brown bin is for the collection of all your household food waste. The contents of the brown bin is brought to our composting facility, where it is used to produce a high quality compost. We supply Free biodegradable bin liners to keep your bin clean. Some people use a kitchen caddy to keep indoors for convenience and the larger bin outdoors. The kitchen caddy is a small lidded bin for your kitchen to collect food waste. When the caddy is full, empty it into the larger brown bin, which you keep outdoors.

Can I put raw or cooked meat in my brown bin?

  • Yes. Any type of food waste can be placed in yourbrown bin. See Question “What can I put in my brown bin?” for a full list of materials.

Why should I use a brown bin?

  • It saves money because you become more aware of the food you waste. The average family wastes €50 per month on discarded food. See www.stopfoodwaste.ie for tips to reduce food waste and is cheaper to use than your waste bin. It’s better for the environment because you are avoiding sending food waste to a landfill where it produces harmful greenhouse gases. It produces a high quality compost. Recycling food waste is the Law. Failure to use the brown bin may result in a fine being issued to you by your local authority. View a video from www.brownbin.ie https://youtu.be/kbZGehcFVe8

What can I put in my brown bin?

  • YES Please


    You can put any of the following into your brown bin including:


    > Raw or cooked food

    > Meat, poultry & fish, including bones

    > Leftover food from your plate & dishes

    > Fruit & vegetables

    > Tea bags, coffee grinds & paper filters

    > Breads, cakes & biscuits

    > Rice, pasta & cereals

    > Dairy products (cheese, butter, yoghurt)

    > Soups & sauces

    > Eggs, egg shells & cardboard egg boxes

    > Food soiled paper napkins, paper towels & pizza boxes

    > Newspaper (when used for wrapping food waste)

    > Out of date food with packaging removed (no glass/plastic)

    Grass clippings and small twigs can also be added to your large brown bin.


  • NO Thanks


    Please do not put any of the following materials into your brown bin:

    > Plastic bags/bottles

    > Packaging of any sort

    > Nappies

    > Glass

    > Stones/soil

    > Metal cans/wire

    > Cardboard

    > Ashes, coal or cinders

    > Pet faeces or litter

    > Cooking oils


    IF IN DOUBT PHONE AND FIND OUT – contact us on 01 623 1533 or info@thorntons-recycling.ie

    View the video from www.brownbin.ie https://youtu.be/kbZGehcFVe8


I already compost food waste at home, can I still do this?

  • Yes. Your home composting bin can still be used for uncooked vegetables and fruit peelings. However you cannot place raw meat/cooked meats into your home composter. You can use your brown bin for all types of food waste, including raw/cooked foods or meats. But remember, you cannot place food waste into your general waste bin.

Can I use plastic bags in my brown bin?

  • No. Plastic bags are made from petrochemical plastics, that do not break down in the composting process but contaminate it. Please remember that if plastic is found in your brown bin, your bin will not be emptied and a contamination tag will be placed on your bin to inform you of this. You can use compostable bags, or, newspaper. The newspaper will absorb any liquid and is completely compostable. If you would prefer to use compostable bags, please use bags which are 100% compostable and show the compostable logo (EN13432) shown below.

compost Thorntons Recycling supply, Free of charge, bin liners for your brown bin.


Where can I get compostable bags?

  • You can purchase compostable bags from your local supermarket or also online. These are identified by a seedling logo shown below and described ‘compostable’

compost Thorntons Recycling supply, Free of charge, bin liners for your brown bin.


What happens to my food waste?

  • When we collect the contents of your brown bin they are taken to our dedicated composting plant in Kilmainhamwood where it is specially treated and turned into high quality compost. This can be used on gardens, in landscaping projects and on fields. For more information click here.

What is a kitchen caddy?

  • A kitchen caddy is a small lidded bin that you can put on the table top, work surface, beside your normal kitchen bin or under the sink. It is used to collect small quantities of food waste such as vegetable and fruit peelings, bones, teabags.

The waste collector has placed a tag on my brown bin saying its contaminated. What do I do?

  •  The Thorntons Recycling waste collectors check each brown bin before emptying it into the collection truck. If they find anything in your bin that cannot be composted, such as plastic, they cannot empty it and will attach a tag to the bin telling you it was contaminated. If this occurs, you are advised to check the contents of your bin and remove any contamination. You can then present your bin for the next collection as usual.

Will the brown bin cost me more money?

  • The new brown bin system should not cost more money if waste is segregated correctly. Under Bye Laws and National Waste Policy, we must encourage recycling by offering a lesser charge for collecting your brown bin than your general waste bin. The most expensive waste stream of all is general waste (landfill waste). There is a Government levy on waste going to landfill therefore, by putting food waste into your brown bin instead, you avoid this levy and save money.


Why has the brown bin to be collected fortnightly? If, It’s not full can I wait?

  • It is a required under law (Household Food Waste Regulations 2013) that a waste collector must provide a brown bin collection service fortnightly. This is to ensure food waste is collected regularly and often so there are no odour issues for the householder and also to provide the best possible product after treatment at a composting facility giving the best environmental outcome for everyone.