This is What That Number On The Bottom Of A Plastic Bottle Means


If you are the kind of person who reads their shampoo bottles in the shower, there is a great chance that you might have fiddled with plastic bottles to keep you from dying of boredom. If you did, you would have noticed a cyclic triangle with a number in the middle, at the bottom of the bottle.

Everyone knows that the symbol with arrows is meant for recycling, but why is there a number in the middle? The number is stamped there as a Resin Identification Code, or RIC. The series goes from 1 up to 7 and identifies the kind of plastic the container is made up of. The code helps recycle the containers as not all recycling centers provide the facility of recycling every kind of plastic.

Code 1 is for polyethylene terephthalate which is usually used to make soda bottles and peanut butter jars. Code 2 is assigned to the high-density polyethylene that is used for milk containers and laundry detergent buckets. The code 4 is the low-density plastic polyethylene used for making grocery bags and shrink wrap. The 3 and 7 are common plastics found in pretty much everything may it be sunglasses or bullet proof material.

The most difficult to recycle are the PVCs, 3, and 7 and most recycling centers do not facilitate the recycling of such materials.

Now that you know, it might help you recycle your plastics easier.

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