Glossary of Terms

Agency is defined under State Agency.

Antifreeze is an engine coolant added to radiator water in cars, trucks, and many other types of engines. To count towards attaining the mandated goal, recycled antifreeze, as defined in Public Contract Code (PCC) 12209(h), must have at least a 70 percent postconsumer recycled content by weight.

Composite Product is a product that is made of more than one type of material. Please see the Composite Policy.

Composite Policy for an explanation of how to report these purchases in the annual SABRC report.

Compost, Co-Compost and Mulch: Compost as defined in PCC section 12207(c)(1), is a product resulting from the biological decomposition of organic materials such as leaves, grass clippings, yard trimmings, fruits, and vegetables. For these reporting purposes, compost may also include humus and other organic soil amendments with or without additives. Co-compost, as defined in PCC section 12207(c)(2), is derived by blending compost with biosolids. Mulch (organic materials) is defined in PCC section 12207(c)(3) means organic materials that are diverted from disposal through source separation at the point of generation or at a processing facility, and that are processed to remove inert material contamination (for example, plastic, paper, glass) and to reduce feedstock material to a specified particle size. Organic materials include, but are not limited to, yard trimmings, branches and stumps; and untreated wood (construction lumber or pallets, etc). Mulch product includes both mechanically processed material that has not gone through a composting process, or large size particles screened off a compost product.

For either compost, co-compost, or mulch to count towards attaining the mandated procurement goal, it must contain at least 80 percent postconsumer material (PCC section 12209(c)).

Glass products, as defined in PCC section 12207(d), include all products consisting primarily of glass materials, including, but not limited to, containers, windows, fiberglass insulation, reflective beads, and construction blocks. To count towards attaining the mandated goals, recycled glass products must contain at least 50 percent by weight secondary and/or postconsumer material, with at least 10 percent being postconsumer.

Lubricating oils, include, but are not limited to, crankcase, engine, and transmission oils. To count towards attaining the mandated goals, recycled lubricating oils, as defined in PCC section 12209(e)), must have a base oil consisting of at least 70 percent re-refined oil by weight.

Metal products, according to PCC section 12207(k), means all metal products, including but not limited to, staplers, paper clips, steel furniture, desks, rebar, pipe, plumbing fixtures, chairs, file cabinets, shelving, containers, building and construction products, and lockers. Metal products must contain at least 10 percent recycled-content to be SABRC compliant.

Paint, includes, but is not limited to, aerosols, latex and enamel paint, and primers. To count towards attaining the mandated goals, recycled paint products, as defined in PCC section 12209(g), must have a recycled content consisting of at least 50 percent postconsumer paint by weight. If paint containing 50 percent postconsumer content is unavailable, State agencies may substitute paint with the maximum amount of postconsumer content, but not less than 10 percent postconsumer by weight.

Paper products, as defined in PCC section 12207(a) include all products made from wood and/or paper fiber (excluding printing and writing paper), such as hanging file folders, paper janitorial supplies, towels, tissue, corrugated boxes, and various types of paperboard (boxes, cartons, wrapping, packaging). To count towards attaining the mandated goals, recycled paper products must contain at least 30 percent postconsumer material.

Plastic products, as defined in PCC section 12207(f), include all products comprised primarily of plastic material, including, but not limited to, plastic lumber, containers, bags, packaging, remanufactured toner cartridges, and office products. To count towards attaining the mandated goals, recycled plastic products must contain at least 10 percent postconsumer material.

Postconsumer material, as defined in PCC section 12200(e), comes from products that were bought by consumers, used, and then recycled. For example, a newspaper that has been purchased and read, recycled, then used to make another product would be postconsumer material.

Printing and writing paper is defined in PCC section 12209(b) as containing at least 30 percent by fiber weight postconsumer material. This category includes but is not limited to copy paper and xerographic papers of all colors and higher-grade papers such as watermarked and cotton fiber papers. It also includes high-speed copier paper, offset paper, forms bond, computer printout paper, carbonless paper, Post-it notes, manila file folders, calendars, posters, ruled papers, white wove envelopes, books, publications, and subscriptions.

Purchase/procure means any method, contract, procedure, agreement, or arrangement that agencies use to obtain products, goods, materials, and supplies.

Recycled product is defined in PCC section 12200(h) as goods or materials that meet the requirements identified in PCC section 12209, including any good or material that has been reused or refurbished without substantial alteration of its original form. This definition applies to paper products, plastic products, compost, a co-compost, and mulch, glass products, lubricating oils, paints, antifreeze, metal and tires.

Refurbished/remanufactured/reused products are products that could have been disposed of as solid waste. These products have completed their life cycle as consumer items, and they are then refurbished for reuse without substantial alteration of their form. Refurbishing includes renovating, repairing, restoring, or generally improving the appearance, performance, quality, functionality, or value of a product. The recycled-content requirements for these products are met because it is a remanufactured product.

Per statute (PCC 12209(l)) Reused or Refurbished products are Reportable Purchases and are automatically SABRC compliant. There is no minimum post-consumer recycled content requirement. Agencies determine which product category the products should be reported under, in order to report the total cost.

reportable purchase/product can be either a Recycled-Content Product (RCP) or a non-RCP. A reportable purchase/product is any product, RCP or non-RCP, from within the 11 product categories.

reportable RCP can be counted towards attainment of the goals. A reportable RCP is a product from within one of the 11 product categories that either contains at least the minimum secondary and postconsumer material specified by statute or has been refurbished/remanufactured.

reportable non-RCP is a product within one of the 11 product categories, having no recycled-content or less than the minimum required for its particular product category. The reportable non-RCP would either not contain the minimum postconsumer material content, or it would not be a reused/refurbished product.

Retreaded tires, as defined in PCC section 12207(i), include, but are not limited to, any passenger, truck, heavy equipment, or agricultural implement tire that has been recapped or has had a new tread portion affixed to a used casing. Retreaded tires qualify as recycled-content products under the reuse definition. Therefore, retreaded tires have no minimum recycled-content requirements.

Secondary material as defined in PCC section 12200(l) consists of fragments of finished products of a manufacturing process. Examples of secondary material include paper trimmed from an oversized roll in the printing plant and a rough edge trimmed from a molded plastic product. These excess materials are recycled prior to the finished product reaching a consumer. Therefore, that material would be secondary material (also referred to as pre-consumer or postindustrial material) as opposed to postconsumer material.

State agency is defined to include every department, board, commission, fair and exposition, CSU, and office within State government and the Legislature. It includes all the agency-level offices and cabinet-level offices, such as the Secretary of State, Attorney General, and the State Treasurer’s Office. A complete list of State agencies, departments, boards, commissions, and fairs and expositions is available at If you are a board/bureau within a department, please check with the department to determine if a department or agency is reporting on your behalf.

Tire-derived products, according to section 42890 of the Public Resources Code, include but not limited to, rubber products, rubberized asphalt, carbon-black, metal, or nylon products whose raw materials were derived from the processing of tires. Recycled tire-derived products must contain at least 50 percent by weight postconsumer material.

Tires, according to PCC section 12207(i), include all tires regardless of size or type. All tire purchases are to be reported. The recycled-content requirements for retreaded tires are met because it is a remanufactured product.

For more information contact: State Agency Buy Recycled Campaign,