Buying Recycled Products

What’s Required?

State agencies must purchase recycled products instead of non-recycled products whenever recycled products are available, if fitness and quality are equal, and are at the same or a lesser total cost than non-recycled products. The State Legislature has mandated that state agencies purchase goods and materials from 11 product categories (Public Contract Code (PCC) section 12201(c).

11 Reportable Product Categories

State agencies shall ensure each of the following to accomplish the mandate:

  • Report purchases within the 11 product categories (PCC section 12209).
  • The reportable purchases shall meet each product category’s minimum recycled-content requirement and be applied to the total dollar amount of each specified product category.
  • At least 75 percent of the total reportable purchases shall contain postconsumer recycled-content materials, except for paint, antifreeze, and tires, which remain at the 50 percent requirement. (PCC section 12201(c)).
  • The purchase of a recycled product from one category may not be applied toward the requirements or the total dollar amount of any other category (PCC section 12203(d)).
  • If a product is made of more than one type of material, it may be a composite product. Guidance on composite products can be found in the Reporting Policy.

Note: Reused or refurbished products should be considered 100 percent recycled and there is no minimum-content required.

The 11 reportable product categories are described below. To go directly to a specific category, select it from the list below. Any questions regarding whether a product is reportable should be directed to the State Agency Buy Recycled Campaign (SABRC) contact listed at bottom of this page.

  1. Paper Products
    Including, but not limited to, paper janitorial supplies, cartons, wrapping, packaging, napkins, file folders and hanging files, building insulation and panels, corrugated boxes, tissue, paper food service ware, and towels.
  2. Printing and Writing Paper
    Including, but not limited to, copy, xerographic watermark, cotton fiber, offset, forms, computer printout paper, white wove envelopes, manila envelopes, book paper, notepads, writing tablets, newsprint, uncoated writing papers, posters, index cards, calendars, brochures, reports, magazines, and publications.
  3. Compost, Co-Compost, and Mulch
    Including soil amendments, erosion controls, soil toppings, ground covers, weed suppressants, compost socks, compost blankets, and organic materials used for water conservation.
  4. Glass Products
    Including, but not limited to, windows, test tubes, beakers, laboratory or hospital supplies, fiberglass (insulation), reflective beads, tiles, construction blocks, desktop accessories, flat glass sheets, loose-grain abrasives, deburring media, liquid filter media, and containers.
  5. Lubricating Oil Products
    Including, but no limited to, any oil intended for use in a crankcase, transmission, engine, power steering, gearbox, differential, chainsaw, transformer dielectric fluid, cutting, hydraulic, industrial, automobile, bus, truck, vessel, plane, train, heavy equipment, or machinery powered by an internal combustion engine.
  6. Plastic Products
    Including, but not limited to, printer or duplication cartridges, diskettes, carpet, office products, plastic lumber, buckets, waste baskets, containers, benches, tables, fencing, clothing, mats, packaging, signs, posts, binders, sheets, building products, garden hoses, plastic food service ware, and trays.
  7. Paint
    Including, but not limited to, water-based, graffiti abatement, interior and exterior, and maintenance paint.
  8. Antifreeze Including recycled antifreeze and antifreeze containing a bittering agent or made from polypropylene or other similar nontoxic substance.
  9. Tires
    Including, but not limited to, truck and bus tires, and those used on fleet vehicles and passenger cars.
  10. Tire-Derived Products
    Including, but not limited to, flooring, mats, wheelchair ramps, playground cover, parking bumpers, bullet traps, hoses, bumpers, truck bedliners, pads, walkways, tree ties, road surfacing, wheel chocks, rollers, traffic control products, mud flaps, artificial turf, rubber mulch, sports tracks, recreational flooring, stall mats, and posts.
  11. Metal Products
    Including, but not limited to, staplers, paper clips, steel furniture, desks, pedestals, scissors, jacks, rebar, pipe, plumbing fixtures, chairs, ladders, file cabinets, shelving, containers, lockers, sheet metal, girders, building and construction products, bridges, braces, nails, and screws.