Recycling and composting are important, but what does it mean to go “zero waste”?

Zero Waste

Southface's Waste Practices

The zero-waste approach is a truly sustainable choice for your organization and emphasizes reuse over disposal, routing what has traditionally been considered trash away from landfills. With this holistic approach to waste diversion, Southface Institute can help your business achieve its zero-waste goals while saving money, reducing your carbon footprint and supporting a healthy environment.

To help Southface maintain a zero-waste campus during your visit (nothing goes to landfill), please make sure any potential waste you bring to the campus is either recyclable or compostable. Here’s a helpful guide of materials that Southface can recycle and compost.


Recyclable items should be clean and free of food debris BEFORE being placed in the recycling stream.

  • Aluminum foil and containers
  • Batteries
    Zinc carbon, button, lithium, rechargeable, car, alkaline
  • Cardboard
  • Clothing and textiles
  • Corrugated plastics
    (i.e. political signs)
  • Electronic waste
  • Glass bottles and jars
    Food-grade ONLY; lids and corks removed
  • Laser ink printer cartridges
  • Metals
    Steel, iron, brass and aluminum
  • Paper
    Printer/office paper, magazines, newspaper, phone books, paper bags
  • Plastics
    Plastic items, numbers 1 to 7, marked with symbols ♳, ♴, ♵, ♶, ♷, ♸, ♹ and stretchable plastic bags, bubble wrap, plastic wrap
  • Straws
  • Styrofoam
  • Waxed cartons
    (i.e. broth, milk, juice)
  • Wine corks


  • Baking ingredients
  • Candies, cookies and cake
  • Cardboard to-go containers
  • Clothing
    ONLY 100% cotton or wool with all tags, decorations, plastic prints, etc. removed
  • Coffee grounds and filters
  • Materials labeled ASTM D6400 or D6868
  • Cooked foods
  • Natural cork
  • Dairy products
  • Egg Shells
  • Food-soiled paper, paper bags and napkins
  • Flour and sugar bags
  • Fruit and vegetable scraps
  • Herbs
  • Household plants, including soil
  • Items labeled BPI® Certified
  • Meat, bones and fish products
  • Muffin wrappers
  • Paper fast-food packaging
  • Paper plates
  • Pasta, bread and cereal
  • Pencils
  • Pet food
  • Pizza boxes
  • Spices
  • Tea bags
  • Wax
    ONLY items made out of 100% wax
  • Wood/sticks
    (i.e. corndog and ice-pop sticks)

Hold your next meeting at Southface

Rent out a space at Southface  ̶  a high-performance, zero-waste campus.