Food and garden waste recycling bin

Garden waste 

In March 2019 Councillors agreed a £30 charge for the collection of brown bins containing garden waste.

We have written to households on a brown bin route to inform residents of the change. 

From 1 September, brown bins containing garden waste will only be emptied if they display a valid garden waste permit. We recommend you sign up in time for the September start date to get the full benefit of the permit. 

Please note that there is no charge for using your brown bin for food waste only and your brown bin collection day will not change.

Your garden waste collection permit:

  • Is valid from 1 September 2019 until 31 August 2020. 
  • Costs £30 regardless of when in the year it is purchased.
  • Will have your address on it. 
  • Cannot be transferred to another property.
  • Will not be refunded if you move house.

You will be issued with a tamper proof sticker (permit) to fix to your brown bins as proof of subscription. Your permit will be mailed to you within 21 days of your application and payment. Follow the instructions on the reverse of the permit showing you how and where to attach to your bin. The permit will be durable, tamper proof and will have your address on it.

You will only need to pay the charge if you choose to use the garden waste service. 

You will not have to pay the charge if you only use your brown bin for food waste. You can recycle your garden waste on one of our household waste and recycling centres or you can try home composting.

Brown bin collections

Your brown bin must be out for collection by 7am on your scheduled day.

  • All waste must fit in the bin with the lid closed.
  • No excess waste can be left on the street next to the bin.
  • Food waste can be loose, in kitchen caddy liners or wrapped in newspaper or a paper bag.
  • Remember to move the bin from the kerbside as soon as is practical following collection.
  • If you are unable to put your bin out yourself, we may be able to offer assisted collections.

What you can recycle

Food waste

  • All cooked and uncooked food waste
  • Dairy and eggshells
  • Meat, fish and bones
  • Fruit and vegetables
  • Bread, cakes and pastries
  • Rice and pasta
  • Tea bags
  • Coffee grounds
  • Solid fats such as butter or lard
  • Leftovers from preparing food
  • Leftovers from meals
  • Out of date food left in fridge or cupboards

Garden waste 

Remember, you must pay the £30 subscription fee for this service

  • Flowers including Rhododendrons
  • Grass cuttings
  • Hedge trimmings
  • Leaves
  • Small branches, bark and twigs
  • Weeds but not Ragwort or Japanese Knotweed

What you can't recycle even with a permit

Please do not put any of the following items in your brown bin:

  • Himalayan Balsam
  • Giant hogweed
  • Pet food
  • Household waste
  • Food packaging
  • Plastic bags or black bags
  • Oils or liquids
  • Chemicals
  • Large branches
  • Fence panels, posts or treated wood such as trellises
  • Flower pots, seed trays or plastic plant labels

Additional bin

You can have up to two brown bins for your household. There is a £36.10 charge for an additional bin.

You can have a food caddy to use inside your house for collecting food waste. Delivery is free. 

Food caddy liners

If you need more liners for your food caddy, you can collect them from locations across Aberdeen. Find out more about where to collect food caddy liners

Additional waste

Please do not leave any extra waste or large items at the side of the bin because we will not be able to collect them. If you have excess waste or a large item that will not fit in the bin, you can:

Contact the Waste and Recycling team

Contact us


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