Virginia Tech® home

Plastic Bag Recycling

The Virginia Tech Office of Sustainability is offering a new plastic bag recycling pilot program for the spring 2022 semester. Plastic bags are one of the biggest sources of contamination in our current recycling stream. To combat this, our student interns have partnered with NexTrex to bring four plastic bag and other soft plastic recycling bins to campus to collect these materials and keep them out of our waste stream. Not only is this a great opportunity to reduce the contamination in our recycling bins, but this option also keeps the plastic bags out of the landfill, helping Virginia Tech reach its Climate Action Commitment goal of being a Zero-Waste Campus by 2030. 

You can recycle your plastic bags and other soft plastics at the following locations:

The bin is located on the first floor to the left of the Information Desk.

Plastic bag recycling bin located in Squires Student Center on the first floor to the left of the information desk against a large white pillar

The bin is located on the first floor next to the fish in the lobby. 

A white soft plastic recycling bin is placed to the left of a large model fish on the first floor of Cheatham Hall.

The bin is located just inside from the loading dock and is intended for use by employees handling shipments. If you are a student interested in dropping off soft plastics to be recycled, please use either the Squires or the Cheatham bins.

This image shows a plastic bag recycling bin in up against a wall in the loading dock area of Holden Hall.

The bin is located in the atrium, just inside of the automatic doors. 

The image shows a NexTrex bin located just inside of the automatic doors to the McComas atrium.

The image that follows shows what can be recycled in these bins, which includes plastic bags, bubble wrap, and ziploc bags: 

This image shows a poster created by the company NexTrex which details what can be recycled in the next trex bins. The bins accept plastic bags and other similar soft plastic materials.

From the store:

  • Produce bags
  • Store bags
  • Ice bags

From your front door:

  • Newspaper sleeves
  • Dry cleaning bags
  • Bubble wrap
  • Plastic e-commerce mailers

From your pantry:

  • Ziploc and other reclosable bags
  • Cereal box liners
  • Case overwrap
  • Bread bags

More details can be found at

As of January 26, 2023, we've collected over 5,000 pieces of soft plastics through this program!

Please do not use these bins to dispose of trash, masks, food waste, or other items that are not allowed in the bins. Plastics #1 and #2 should be recycled in traditional recycling bins available across campus, not in the NexTrex bins. When in doubt, throw it out.

These recycling bins available for campus use through the end of the spring 2023 semester. If you have any questions, please email or follow us on Instagram (@vtsustainable) to learn more.