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Frequently Asked Questions

New to First Mile? Looking for extra information on business recycling? If you’ve got a question, the chances are someone else has asked us the same thing. Have a look at our handy FAQs below . And if we have missed your burning question, call us for free on 0800 612 9894.

Getting Started

Why do I need business recycling and waste services?

You’re legally responsible for the waste produced by your business until you give it to a licensed waste business to deal with. Your business rates don’t cover waste collection and disposal, so you need to choose a licensed waste carrier (that’s us!) to responsibly dispose of your business waste for you.

You’ll need documents which prove you’ve met this obligation. We’ll give them to you for free.

You also have a legal obligation to ensure your business recycles as much of its waste as possible. By using First Mile’s easy, low cost business recycling services, you can be sure that you’re recycling just about everything.

Can First Mile work with my business?

If your business is in London or Birmingham, we can recycle your waste for you. We work with businesses of all sizes including:

We also provide nationwide services for many high profile chain retailers.

Most of our customers buy mixed recycling and waste sacks from us on a pay-as-you-go basis. You buy bags at a really low price when you need them. The price includes next working day delivery and all disposal costs. Fill them, put them outside your business on an agreed schedule and we collect them. Simple!

If you have different requirements, we’re also happy to provide bin services. We can work with you to provide a bespoke solution which you’ll love.

How much does it cost?

Our prices vary in different areas and for different requirements. We can guarantee they’re always low cost, in particular in comparison with council provided commercial waste services.

The price of a sack includes delivery, disposal, and all the legal documentation you need to show you’ve handled your business waste right. And that’s it.

As we work on a pay-as-you-go basis, you’re not tied into a contract and you won’t pay a penny in admin fees.

We’ll also save you money by helping you recycle pretty much everything. Recycling your waste is cheaper than throwing it away.

What can I recycle?

With our super simple mixed recycling service, you’ll put just about all your businesses recyclable waste in one sack. There’s no need to sort, just put all of the following in your mixed recycling bags:

  • Paper – white or coloured
  • Card – white or coloured
  • Leaflets
  • Brochures, magazines, newspapers
  • Junk mail
  • Business directories including Yellow Pages
  • Envelopes, including “window” envelopes
  • Drinks cans & food tins
  • Glass bottles & jars
  • Tetrapak and cartons
  • Cardboard
  • Plastic bottles, films & carrier bags

And because we believe in a world where you can recycle everything, we also provide easy recycling services for:

  • Larger amounts of cardboard
  • Fully accredited confidential paper shredding and recycling
  • Food waste
  • Toners and cartridges
  • WEEE (that’s all electricals!)
  • Batteries
  • Fluorescent tubes and lightbulbs
  • Waste coffee grounds
  • Textiles
  • Stationery

Can I use First Mile for rubbish too?

Yes, we’ll collect anything you can’t recycle as well. Our general waste service is zero-to-landfill, so it won’t end up in a horrible landfill site. Instead it will be taken to a state of the art energy-from-waste plant where it will be used to produce electricity and power over 100000 homes.

What times can my waste be collected?

In many areas we can collect up to 3 times daily, 7 days a week. We’ll make sure your waste is collected at a time which suits your business. We’ll also follow any local time band regulations and ensure you’re not at risk of receiving any fines.

How do I get started?

Just enquire online now. You’ll hear back from one of our friendly business recycling experts and they’ll get you registered in 5 minutes flat. We can deliver your first order and start collecting your waste tomorrow. Or if that’s too soon, just tell us when to begin.

And if you prefer the phone, give us a call for free on 0800 6129894 between 8.30am and 6.00pm Monday to Friday.

New Customers

What help can I get with my new services?

Our team can give you expert advice on how to get the most out of your First Mile services. We can also help you recycle more by:

  • Offering a range of bins suitable for your workplace
  • Providing handy posters so all your colleagues know what to put in which bin
  • Booking a free visit from our Solutions Manager to help you roll out your service and train your staff.

And you can call or email us at any time, with any questions at all – we’re very happy to help

How do I re-order sacks?

You can order online, by email or by phone.

If you’re paying by invoice or BACS, you need to order a minimum of £100 worth of bags. If your order is under £100, we’ll give you a call to arrange payment before your delivery.

We strongly recommend you register for automated payment. That’ll mean the minimum purchase doesn’t apply. You can register online here.

For the easiest service possible, you can also arrange for regular orders to be placed and delivered automatically. Enquire online, email us, or call us if you’re interested.

How do I get my compliance documentation

You can download your annual WTN and all your compliance documentation from our online customer portal. We provide it for free!

What are the terms and conditions?

You’re not tied into any contract with First Mile. If you ever need to stop using our services, just stop ordering, let us know and your service can be stopped straight away. Our full T&Cs are online here.

What is our data protection policy? 

When sharing any information with First Mile, we manage and protect your data responsibly, compliant with the General Data Protection Regulation. Read our data protection policy online here.

Added Extras For Keen Recyclers

Where does my recycling go?

Your mixed recycling to a state-of-the-art Materials Recovery Facility, otherwise known as a MRF. They use lots of shiny technology to sort your recycling into 14 streams of different materials. The materials are bought by manufacturers who use it to make new products for sale.

We can arrange tours of this facility on request from customers.

You can find out more about where each material goes on our service pages.

You can download a full list of where we take your recycling here.

Where does my non-recyclable rubbish go?

We don’t send a single gram of waste to landfill. Anything we can’t recycle is used to produce electricity at energy-from-waste plants. This electricity is used to power 100,000s of homes.

How much am I recycling?

You can easily recycle 90% of your business waste with First Mile.

We’ll send you monthly reports, based on the services you buy from us, which are chock full of stats about how well you’re doing.

If you’re very, very good, you might even reach our coveted Gold standard, and get a shiny certificate once a year.