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What Do the Recycling Symbols on Plastics Mean?

These symbols we see on any plastic; It is for the purpose of guiding us on the suitability for reuse or how we should separate the plastic product before throwing it away.

Recycling Symbols 01 – Meaning of PET Symbol

It is known as the type of plastic that allows bacteria to accumulate. It is most commonly found in soda bottles, water bottles, beer bottles, salad dressing containers, mouthwash bottles, and peanut butter containers.
Plastic #1 is recycled into tote bags, furniture, carpet, panels, fiber and fleece.

Recycling Symbols 02 – Meaning of HDPE Symbol

This plastic is one of 3 plastics considered safe.
Milk cans, detergent bottles, juice bottles, butter cups and toiletries bottles are made from it. It is usually opaque.
Plastic #2 is recycled into pens, recycling containers, picnic tables, lumber, benches, fences and detergent bottles.

Recycling Symbols 03 – Meaning of PVC Symbol

These plastics have and still contain phthalates, which have been linked to numerous health issues, from developmental issues to miscarriages. They also contain DEHA, which can be carcinogenic with prolonged exposure. DEHA has also been associated with loss of bone mass and liver problems. Burning these plastics is dangerous.
It is found in shampoo bottles, clean food packaging, cooking oil bottles, medical equipment, pipes and windows.
This plastic is recycled into panels, floors, speed bumps, decks and highway gutters.

Recycling Symbols 04 – Meaning of the LBPE Symbol

It is most commonly found in squeezable bottles, shopping bags, clothing, carpets, frozen food, bread bags, and some food packages. Plastic #4 is among the recycling symbols considered safe.

Recycling Symbols 05 – Meaning of the PP Symbol

It is one of the safer plastics. It is commonly found in yogurt containers, ketchup bottles, syrup bottles, and medicine bottles.
Polypropylene is recycled into brooms, automobile battery boxes, drums, pallets, signal lights, ice scrapers and bike racks.

Recycling Symbols 06 – Meaning of PS Symbol

Polystyrene is Styrofoam, which is notorious for being difficult to recycle and therefore bad for the environment. This type of plastic also poses a health risk by leaching potentially toxic chemicals, especially when heated.
Plastic #6 is found in compact disc boxes, egg cartons, meat trays, and disposable plates and cups. It is recycled into egg cartons, vents, foam packaging and insulation.

Recycling Symbols 07 – Meaning of OTHER Symbol

All of the plastic resins that do not fall into other categories are in category 7. These plastics should be avoided as they likely contain hormone disruptors such as BPA, which has been linked to infertility, hyperactivity, reproductive issues and other health problems.
Plastic #7 is found in sunglasses, iPod cases, computer cases, nylon, 3- and 5-gallon water bottles, and bulletproof materials. Plastic is recycled into lumber and other handmade products.

What should we pay attention to in line with this information?

While we continue to use it in our daily life, we should use water bottles, yogurt containers, detergent boxes and all other plastics by paying attention to these symbols on them.

The products we use carelessly can cause big harm to our health or the environment.

It is useful to learn these symbols in order to avoid harm and ensure sustainability.

Nil Karul