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Rubbish & Recycling Rubbish & Recycling

Rubbish and Recycling - New Service Information

Goodbye buckets and bags. Hello crates and wheelie bins.
The way we collect rubbish and recycling from the kerbside has changed.

Why the change?

In 2017, in partnership with Napier City Council, we consulted widely on our Joint Waste Management and Minimisation Plan for Hastings and Napier. Over 6,000 submissions were made in writing to Council.
What we were told was that it’s important to our community how we use our landfill: they want to see increased recycling and less organic waste going to landfill.

The changes to the kerbside collection services are one of the first major actions that will help us reach new targets towards achieving this.

Keep reading to find out what you need to know to use the new service successfully.

New collection days

Rubbish and recycling will be collected on different days. Please have your wheelie bin and crates out by 7am on your collection day. 

Your collection days may have changed from 1 July which you can check on the sticker on the side of your new wheelie bin or crates or by entering your address below:

Missed collection

If your rubbish or recycling has not been collected and does not have a rejection sticker, or the reason for the rejection is not clear, please contact Hastings District Council on +64 8715000

Rubbish: Wheelie Bins

Why 120L bins?

Good things come in smaller bins. We acknowledge that the 120L bin may not appear to be the perfect sized bin for everyone but based on our research, this is the best size for the majority of households.

We completed a five day audit of approximately 150 rubbish bags and 60 wheelie bins to look at the compsition of our kerbside rubbish. This showed us that on average 60% of bag content and 66% of bin content could have been diverted from landfill by either recycling or composting.

This is our goal – we want everyone to make landfill their last choice. Our landfill is a finite resource and we all need to start making decisions to reduce our waste.

You can read the details of the audit here.

We will be working with you on this journey as we all learn to slim our bins. From changing our buying decisions to making the most of recycling services and effectively dealing with green waste.

Things to remember when using your bin

The following info, and more, is in the quick reference guide that was delivered with your new bin. You can also read the guide here.

Household waste only

Your wheelie bin is for household waste only – no commercial waste. This includes items like broken glass, nappies, soft plastics (e.g. cling wrap and salad bags), and hard plastics (e.g. flower pots) which cannot be recycled or rotted down.

Stop before the top

Make sure the lid on your bin can close fully.

Place your bin out by 7am on your collection day.

Not in BinWhat you can’t put in your bin

We will not be accepting organic waste like lawn clippings and garden waste in the bins as they do not break down fully in landfill. We will be accepting food scraps.

Other items not accepted (as with most wheelie bin providers) include:

  • Liquids
  • Paint
  • Chemicals
  • Soil
  • Gravel
  • Bulky/heavy items such as concrete
  • Construction waste i.e. timber
  • Engine parts
  • Hot ashes

Bin placement

Wheelie bins need to be placed as close to the kerb as possible.

If there are usually cars parked on the side of the road we appreciate your best efforts to put your bin somewhere the truck can access it. 

If you live on a private road your bins must be placed on the kerbside of the nearest public road.

If you have limited kerb space please contact us for advice on where to place your bin.

Bin placement

Recycling: Crates

The following info, and more, is in the information booklet Your Guide to Reducing Waste which was delivered with your new crates. This outlines the new service, how to use (and how not to use!) your crates, and has great information to help you easily reduce your household waste.

You can recycle:

  • Glass 
  • Paper and cardboard
  • Plastics (1&2) and cans

Things to remember when using your crates

Any HDC crate, just separate

You can put out multiple crates with the same items (for example two crates of paper), but don’t mix the different categories in the same crate. Recycling outside of the crates will not be collected i.e large cardboard boxes.'

If you have excess recycling, you can save this up for another week or take it to one of our free recycling drop off centres.

Wash, squash and lids off

Wash out jars, bottles and cans – recycling should be clean, no food or liquids please. Lids are too small to be sorted through the recycling machines so save them up and take them to a specialist recycling centre like The Environment Centre.

Stop before the top

Crates can only be filled until level with the top, so they are a safe weight to lift, don't hit the collector in the face when picking up and items don’t fall off, causing a trip hazard and litter.

Not one, but two

There will be two trucks collecting the recycling. One truck will be collecting paper and cardboard and the other will collect plastic, cans and glass. Don’t bring in your crates before they’ve both been past.

What you can (and can’t!) put in your crates

Paper and cardboard

Clean and flattened paper and cardboard. Large cartons can be dropped at our recycling depots or you can cut them down to fit in your crate.

Yes please No thank you
Junk mail
Egg cartons
Empty pizza boxes (remove all food)
Household packaging
Milk and juice cartons
Takeaway coffee cups
Packaging with food waste
Paper with glitter
Pet food and potato sacks

Plastic and cans

Number 1 & 2 household plastics. Wash, squash, lids off

Yes please No thank you
Kitchen, bathroom and laundry plastics
Tin cans
Aluminium cans
Plastics number 3-7
Hard plastic
Soft plastic (e.g. bags)
Paint tubs
Buckets and plant pots
Chip packets and lolly wrappers


Empty, clean glass of all colours without lids
Metal jar lids, metal bottle tops, aluminium screw caps, and fluorescent light bulbs and tubes can be recycled at The Environment Centre.

Yes please No thank you
Glass soft drink bottles
Wine, beer and spirit bottles
Broken glass
Window and mirror glass
Drinking glasses
Glass cookware
China and crockery
Light bulbs
Perfume bottles

Crate placement

Recycling crates need to be placed as close to the kerb as possible. Crates must not be blocking the footpath.

crate placement

Green waste

First up let’s be clear. Green waste is made up of two groups of waste: kitchen waste and garden waste.

While we discourage wheelie bins being used for kitchen waste (food scraps that can be disposed of organically e.g. composted) you can put this in your wheelie bin.

Garden waste such as lawn clippings, plant trimmings, weeds, soil etc. will not be accepted.

Why is green waste such a big deal?

Almost half of the waste going into the landfill is green waste. It is a serious problem because of the way the landfill has to be managed. Mixed in with other waste and compacted underground with no oxygen means it cannot break down and rots very slowly – which creates methane gas and leachate that contribute to climate change, and threatens the environment. It also takes up a lot of space, so the landfill pit will need to be replaced much earlier than it should be.

Kitchen waste

There are a few options for disposing of your kitchen waste. You may choose to use a private green waste/food waste collection service who will take it to be composted or you can manage it at home using a compost bin, worm farm or bokashi bin. If none of these options are available for you, you can put your kitchen waste in to your rubbish wheelie bin – however we encourage you to some of these alternatives. There is more detailed information here.

Garden waste

Hawke’s Bay has a number of businesses providing garden waste collection services. With providers offering a variety of bin sizes, and collection options from weekly to monthly, there are services to suit most household needs. Dropping garden waste directly to Transfer Stations or BioRich when it suits you is also another option. There is more detailed information here.

Assisted service info

To make kerbside rubbish and recycling accessible for everyone in the Hastings district urban area, we are offering a service to assist those residents who are physically not able to get their rubbish wheelie bin and recycling crates out for collection.

You can read more about this service and download an application form here. 

Meet the trucks

All rubbish and recycling trucks that provide our kerbside collection are engineered to provide a safe, sustainable, and more environmentally friendly method for managing our waste services.

The trucks are designed to reduce harmful pollutants from the exhaust and to comply with emissions standards (Euro 6 rating).

Approximately 33% of the material used to build each new rubbish truck is derived from recycled material, and once it reaches the end of its life, about 90% of the rubbish truck itself is recyclable.

The fleet also has onboard systems that provide us with live data on the progress of the truck through its collection route, and accurate data about the waste we are collecting.

Cameras on the exterior of the trucks enhance safety when drivers are navigating around narrow streets or busy areas.

Paper truck Mixed recycling truck Rubbish truck
Your recycling will be collected using two different vehicles, operated by Smart Environmental. Your rubbish trucks are operated by JJ’s Waste & Recycling.
Hino GH 6X2, Rear Steer Dual Steer Mid West 35 SL85

Because our paper needs to stay free from any contamination to be fit for use at Hawk Packaging we use a separate truck to collect it.
Hino GH 6x2, Rear Steer LEV, Mid West Duo Combi Truck

Glass is sorted in the first compartment of the truck and the mixed plastic and cans compacted in the rear. The glass collection compartment is made of high-strength plastic to help reduce sound.
Paper truck Glass truck Rubbish truck

Report crate and wheelie bin issues

If you haven’t received your crates or wheelie bins or there is another issue please complete this form. You can also report any issues to us on 06 871 5000.


We have developed a list of FAQs for your information. If you have a question that has not been answered, you can contact us on or 06 871 5000.

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Use and maintenance of bins and crates

Absolutely – we recommend that you do personalise your new recycling crates so you can easily identify them. Remember the bins stay at the same address even if you move, so house number not family name is your best bet if you’re getting artistic.

Crates and bins belong to your address. Hastings District Council retains the serial number on each item so that we know what should live where. Please remember to leave your crates when you move house.

It’s not a requirement, however rinsing your bin out regularly will help reduce any smell.


Using crates to separate items ensures we have the cleanest recycling possible – the high quality of the material collected will guarantee it will be recycled. Separating recycling also allows paper and cardboard to be collected separately and dropped directly where it needs to go, saving on double handling and transport emissions.

These items are still useful for other purposes. Consider using one to collect items for the Environment Centre’s specialist recycling programme. If you have no use for them they can be dropped off to the Henderson Road Transfer Station for free. You will need to supply a name and address.

The two main reasons are related to manual handling and the risk of litter.

Health & Safety requirements limit the size of the crates to fit no more than 10kg of the heaviest item (glass) to reduce the risk of injury to collection personnel.

Overfull crates of lighter items such as paper and plastic create the risk of items falling out and becoming litter which can end up in our waterways.

The size of the containers should provide plenty of room for the average family. However, we appreciate that sometimes you have more recycling than normal. If you have more recycling one week, consider spreading out the excess over a few weeks.

Remember you can use any crate for each recycling type. For example, if one week you have lots of glass, put out two crates with glass and maybe save your paper or plastic and cans for another week.

Alternatively, you can drop it off for free at our recycling point locations. Please remember the rules for recycling are the same at the drop-off centres.

When purchasing bigger items such as TVs, washing machines etc, you can request the retailer take back their packaging.

With the new service there will be two trucks collecting the recycling. One for the paper and cardboard and the other for plastic and cans and glass. Glass can easily smash on transportation so needs to be kept separate from other materials so it doesn’t get mixed in. This is especially important for the paper and cardboard as this gets turned into fruit trays at Hawke packaging and must be food safe.

If you have more recycling one week, consider spreading out the excess over a few weeks. You can use any crate for each recycling type. For example, if one week you have lots of glass, put out two crates with glass and save your paper or plastic & cans for another week.

Alternatively you can drop off excess recycling for free at any of Council’s recycling drop-off centres.

Using crates to separate items ensures we have the cleanest recycling possible and the high quality of the material collected will guarantee it will be recycled. Separating recycling also allows paper and cardboard to be collected separately and dropped directly where it needs to go at Hawk Packaging, saving on double handling and transport emissions.

While wheelie bins are very simple to use, the quality of recycling that comes out of the mixed recycling wheelie bins is much lower. All the wrong things can be hidden in a wheelie bin, whereas with a simple glance into a crate you can easily see what shouldn’t be there. It also means that perfectly good, clean, recycling then gets mixed with dirty recycling in the back of the truck lowering the quality of all the recycling. As items are hand sorted it’s also a lot more difficult to separate items afterwards and therefore costs more to process.

Re-processors need recycling to be in its cleanest state - free of food and other contaminants to be able to turn it into new things. In Hastings, it is especially important to keep our glass separate from paper and cardboard which is sent locally to Hawk Packaging where it gets made into fruit trays, so there can’t be any fragments of glass in it for food safety reasons.


You may be eligible for an assisted collection – please call us on 06 871 5000 to discuss.

Based on our SWAP survey a 120L bin will fit the vast majority of households that also appropriately manage recycling and green waste

If you have more rubbish, you can hire an extra bin from a private waste collection company or buy additional orange bags and drop them at Henderson Road Transfer Station for free

Your orange bags will not be collected from 1 July 2020. However, you can still use them and drop them off at Henderson Road Transfer Station for free.

Decisions on private collection services are up to the individual residents. The Council-provided bins are for rubbish only; no green waste will be allowed. If you have a green waste collection service, you may wish to continue this with your private provider, or if you have a large household that generates more than 120L of waste per week, you may wish to continue your private service to meet this need.

There are a few options for disposing of your food waste. You may choose to use a private green waste/food waste collection service who will take it to be composted. Green waste services are often happy to have vegetable peelings placed in the same bin. Or you can manage it at home using a compost bin, worm farm or bokashi bin, we are investigating a subsidy to help people purchase the equipment to do this. Environmentally these are the best options as they don’t produce any harmful by products and help return nutrients to the Earth.

Otherwise you can place your food waste in the rubbish wheelie bins.

Top Tip:  Not all food can be processed via composting/worm farms/bokashi so consider popping any scraps, bones etc. into a bread bag (reuse) in the freezer until your rubbish day.  This is a good way to prevent those items smelling.

All household rubbish that cannot be placed in your recycling crates.

 Please note this EXCLUDES the following items:

  • Garden waste
  • Hot ashes
  • Batteries
  • Hazardous waste
  • Medical waste

Our landfill is filling up and almost half of the waste going into the landfill is organic waste. In addition to taking up valuable space, when mixed in with other waste and compacted to the point where no oxygen can get to it, it cannot break down properly and rots very slowly. This creates methane gas and leachate that contribute to climate change and threatens the environment.

Council will not be providing a green waste collection service, however we encourage residents to consider using a private collection service. You can also dispose of green waste at Council transfer stations or BioRich.

Council is not providing a collection service, however we are investigating subsidies for compost bins, worm farms and bokashi bins.  These are all good options for disposing of your food waste at home. Alternatively you may choose to use a private green waste/food waste collection service. While we actively discourage using your wheelie rubbish bin for food waste, you can place it in the bin if you don't have an alternative option.

Council encourages residents to reduce waste by not lining rubbish or wheelie bins with plastic bags.

All properties within the collection zones that are rated for the rubbish and recycling kerbside collection service will be delivered a bin.  There is no opting out of the service and the rate for the service is based on full participation by urban Hastings residents. The bins will be linked to the property and will need to be handed over to any future owners.

This challenge is overcome by many residents using a private wheelie bin service, who either tow their bin to the kerb using their vehicle, or leave the bin near the letterbox and transport their waste regularly to the bin. We encourage you to use the option that suits you best.

Council is giving advanced notice of the changes to allow for residents to use up their existing orange bags in stock. You may still use up your orange bags and dispose of them for free at the Henderson Road Refuse Transfer Station, but they will not be collected from your kerbside.


The rubbish and recycling service is funded through a rates payment charged to all addresses that have access to the collections. The annual cost to each eligible household is $130 for rubbish and $70 for recycling.  These costs were finalised through the Long Term Plan process in June 2021.

To reward those households that generate less waste and only put your rubbish wheelie in out when it is full, Council has applied a Rates Remission (a partial reduction in rates) to part of the refuse component of the 2021/22 rates assessment.

Council individually tags the wheelie rubbish bins and collect data on how often they are emptied. If your council wheelie bin was emptied 26 times or less (e.g. every second week or less) over the past year you will qualify for a 25% remission of the previous year’s refuse targeted rate.  For the 2021/22 year this will be $32.25 (incl GST), as the rate was $129.00.

This amount reflects the savings made from reduced disposal costs of rubbish not sent to landfill.

It was confirmed by Council in September 2018 through the Waste Management and Minimisation Plan process, which included a public consultation process.

There will be a limit of one 120L wheelie bin for rubbish and three 45L recycling crates per rateable unit. If you have more rubbish or recycling you will need to take it to Henderson Road Transfer Station or one of our recycling drop off centres. You also have the option to use a private collector for additional rubbish bins.

This service cannot be opted out of.

It is likely recycling collection days will stay the same, with rubbish collected the following day, however in some areas this may change.

Please check the sticker on your new crates and bin for your confirmed collection day. You can also check collection days for your address on our website following the launch of the new service.

No, for those not in the collection zone, official orange rubbish bags will still be available for purchase from some retailers, including Council, and can be dropped off at Henderson Road and Blackbridge Refuse Transfer Stations free of charge.

This will form part of the rates paid for by the landlord. It will be at the discretion of the landlord how these charges will impact you.

We are currently reviewing options for assisted collections, more details to follow.

A partial reduction in rates, based on meeting certain criteria, is called a rates remission.

No, the remission amount is fixed to one rate and reflects the savings made from reduced disposal costs of rubbish not sent to landfill. The trucks are still obliged to drive all the designated collection streets every week to ensure those residents within the collection zones have access to sanitary rubbish disposal.

Every rubbish wheelie bin is tagged with an RFID tag allocated to your property, each time the bin is emptied by the truck this data is recorded.  This information is provided to Council on a regular basis and then reconciled against every property in June each year to confirm entitlement to the remission.  Contact Council if you would like to discuss this further.

The remission forms part of the rates paid for by the property owner (or their representative). It will be at the discretion of the property owner how this remission will impact you.

The remission forms part of the rates paid for by the property owner (or their representative). Where possible Council encourage property owners to pass this remission saving onto tenants to reward waste minimisation behaviours.

Council’s waste minimisation team have put together a number of useful resources to help guide residents to reduce their waste.

Get in touch with the team directly to find out more.

No, the remission is only applied to the rubbish charge to reward waste minimisation and low waste producing households.  The recycling service will not be reduce to encourage correct behaviour.


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