Not all trash bags are created equal. In fact, a lot of trash bags are made entirely from virgin plastic. Thankfully, companies like Glad are taking steps to provide consumers with a more sustainable trash bag option. Here’s what to look for in an eco-conscious trash bag.

Less Plastic

Our world is already suffering from a plastic pollution problem as it is. That’s why Glad has invested in a smarter design that allows trash bags to be made with less plastic1. All without sacrificing performance and strength! If everyone in the U.S. chose Glad® drawstring bags, they could save 100 million pounds of plastic from going to landfill each year2. FYI, that’s the equivalent of 5,500 garbage trucks worth of trash3. Even more impressive, Glad’s ForceFlexPlus Recovered Plastic bag utilizes green recycling technology at its finest. They’re made with 50% recovered plastic (20% recycled plastic, 30% reclaimed plastic) and have 100% recycled paperboard. And Glad isn’t stopping there — they’re setting a goal to have 50% reduction in virgin materials for all Glad trash bags by 20304.

Less Pollution

A lot of products are manufactured in fossil fuel-powered factories that contribute to pollution and climate change. But Glad is working to improve manufacturing processes to reduce their environmental impact. They’ve achieved zero waste to landfill manufacturing for North American plants in May 20185. That means they recycle or repurpose at least 90% of their waste, then send the remaining 10% or less to a waste-to-energy facility. On top of this they’ve achieved 100% renewable electricity6 in their North American plants in January 2021.

Less Packaging

Cumbersome, excessive packaging only adds to the waste stream. You don’t need something small shipped in a huge box, or wrapped in excessive bubble wrap, right? And excessive packaging isn’t just a waste in terms of landfill — it’s a waste of resources and energy to make. That’s why Glad has a goal for 100% recyclable, reusable or compostable packaging by 2025. Right now, they’re 99% recyclable so they’re on target. They also have a goal of 60% reduction in virgin packaging by 20307. They’ve currently had a 43% reduction in virgin packaging8. This is achieved by increasing recycled fiber in packaging. The reason this matters is because virgin materials must be extracted and mined from the earth — which is an incredibly unsustainable process that produces tons of waste, greenhouse gases and pollution. Using recycled materials cuts down on this greatly.

More Giving Back

What good is a trash bag if you have no recycling systems in place? Sadly, 38% of U.S. households don’t have access to local recycling pickups. Glad believes everyone should have access to curbside recycling, which is why they’ve partnered with Recyclops. Together, they’ve helped more than 100,000 U.S. households that don’t have access to consistent recycling options achieve recycling sustainability. Recyclops uses a gig-economy model for recycling pickup and drop-offs in rural and urban areas. Here’s how it works: When a consumer has recyclables ready for pickup, they simply need to place them in one or more bags (depending on how much you have) on their scheduled pick-up day that is part of their monthly subscription. A Recyclops driver will pick up the materials and ensure they get to where they need to go in order to be recycled correctly. In addition, the custom Glad bags for this partnership are made with 50% less plastic than the previous Recyclops glass recycling bags9. Sustainable recycling is an important part of creating a more circular economy. So, it’s important to see Glad partnering with companies like Recyclops to help bridge the gaps and minimize waste in local communities by providing green waste disposal options.


1. Glad kitchen drawstring trash bags use less plastic than leading competitors. Ranges from 7%–22% less plastic vs. top 10 competitors.
2. Based on IRI data: If existing non-Glad drawstring buyers switch to Glad drawstring bags.
3. Source:
4. To be achieved by increasing levels of post consumer recycled content, plastic reduction in product and increased recycled fiber in packaging.
5. Recycle or repurpose at least 90% of its waste, send the remaining 10% or less to a waste-to-energy facility.
6. For bags manufactured in U.S. plants. All energy used is offset by virtual power purchase agreements and purchased renewable energy certificates (RECs).
7. To be achieved by increased recycled fiber in packaging. *Applies to Glad trash, wraps and food bags business comparison between 2018 and 2021.
8. Achieved by increased recycled fiber in packaging. *Applies to Glad trash, wraps, and food bags business comparison between 2018 and 2021.
9. Made with 50% less plastic. Compared to previous Recyclops glass recycling bag.