She explained the three main problems in the current sorting of trash: glass in the paper slurry, glass in the compost and film plastic from grocery bags.
There is no easy way to get the glass out of the paper slurry, so the people doing the sorting only sideline paper when it clearly isn’t in contact with glass. The same is true for compost. Any compost that could possibly contain glass is sent to the landfill. The plastic bags are a problem because they get stuck in the conveyor belt wheels. The best solution is what San Francisco is now considering, penalizing all bags at grocery stores to encourage bring-your-own bagging.
Two things each of us can do to improve recycling. Put our paper in paper bags or tie them in bundles so that are easy to take out of the sorting stream. Tie the plastic bags in knots or bundles if they aren’t being recycled to the store they came from.