; Skip to Content

Omaha Recycling News: Hefty Energy Bag Program

Omaha and Bellevue residents are now able to recycle more plastic than before thanks to the Hefty® Energy Bag program. The new slogan to know when it comes to Omaha recycling, and it’s “If you don’t bin it, bag it.”

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by the Hefty® Energy Bag program. All thoughts, opinions, and typos are my own.

Hefty® Energy Bag packaging and what the bag looks like out of the packaging

The Hefty® Energy Bag program was the Sustainable Sponsor were at the big Elmwood Park Earth Day Omaha celebration this year. Did you see them?

This recycling program could not make it easier for us to reduce the amount of waste going into local landfills. Thanks to all the program sponsors for initiating this in the metro area! This post is sponsored by the Hefty® Energy Bag Program.

What Goes In A Hefty® Energy Bag

Take a look at the list below to see what can be recycled through the program. I see a lot of things my family tosses in the trash: Frozen vegetable bags, packing peanuts, plastic straws.

Omaha recycling guide by Hefty Energy Bags

As of April 2017, the Hefty® Energy Bag program has collected more than 10,000 bags in the Omaha metro area, diverting more than 5 tons of plastic previously destined for landfills.

How The Hefty® Energy Bag Program Works

This program fits in seamlessly with your usual recycling routine; you just need to buy the Hefty® Energy Bag to recycle the plastics that you used to throw away.

Put the orange Hefty® Energy Bag in with the rest of the recycling

Here’s how the Hefty® Energy Bag Program works:

– Place things like candy wrappers, plastic cutlery and juice pouches in the orange Hefty® Energy Bag. Make sure they’re clean and free of food residue.

– Place orange Energy Bag in your regular recycle bin or cart and put it out with your regular curbside recycling pickup.

– Local haulers pick up the bags during participants’ regular recycling collection and take it to a First Star Recycling facility.

– First Star Recycling sorts the Hefty® Energy Bags before sending them to Systech Environmental Corporation.

– Systech converts the bags and their contents into energy used to produce cement.

Get started

For those in the Omaha area who would like to purchase Hefty® Energy Bags and participate in the innovative recycling program, click here.

The packaging for Hefty® Energy Bags

I had a good question from a Facebook follower, Jessica S.: “Are these bags available locally?” At this time, the bags are not in stores.

However, customers of Papillion Sanitation can get them through the company. According to their websiteEach roll comes with 20 bags and each roll is $10.00.  We will even deliver them to you on your trash day.  If you need some of these energy bags, please call our customer service at 402-346-7800 and your customer service representative will help you. Thanks for the tip, Tabitha!

The Hefty® Energy Bag Program is a collaborative effort between The Dow Chemical Company, Reynolds Consumer Products, Recyclebank, First Star Recycling, ConAgra Foods, and Systech Environmental Corporation. To learn more, visit www.HeftyEnergyBag.com and follow @Hefty and @DowPackaging on Twitter for updates.

Liked this post?

Get more posts like this delivered straight to your inbox twice a month. Subscribe to the FREE e-newsletter sharing giveaways, new posts and updates to popular posts like this one! Subscribe here.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Gary D.

Saturday 2nd of February 2019

I’m curious what makes the designated Orange recycle bags so much more expensive than a standard trash bag. Where is that profite going ?


Tuesday 5th of February 2019

Good question. I'm guessing the expense comes from processing the recyclables, and not so much the bag itself.


Thursday 31st of August 2017

I participated in this program eagerly when it was introduced to the city using the complimentary bags. I don't mind paying $7.00 for additional bags, however, with the high price of shipping I find it just too expensive on my retired income. Reluctantly, I must discontinue the Energy Program. I will continue without fail to recycle trash that is picked up weekly. Bless those of you who participate in this excellent program.

Bonnie Quandt

Monday 12th of February 2018

They are now available at some Hyvee Stores. Stoneybrook and the 178 th and Q st (Welsh Plaza) store that I know of. $7 for 20 bags


Friday 1st of September 2017

Hi Pamela, I'm sorry to hear that.

Kristin Holtgrew

Sunday 25th of June 2017

Tried this out in Omaha, but first the garbage haulers tossed them into their truck (garbage and recycling pick up is same day). I convinced them to take them out and leave them for recycling. Then when recycling company came, they had never heard of the program. So it would seem that I have purchased pretty expensive garbage bags. Trying to figure out who best to talk to to sort this out. :(


Monday 26th of June 2017

Oh no! That doesn't sound right at all. That I know of, Papillion Sanitation has a contact number for the program (402-346-7800). And this is the contact form for the city's recycling contract: http://firststarrecycling.com/energy-bag-program/. Hope one of those is useful.


Thursday 1st of June 2017

We've been using these bags for awhile now. Still on our first roll and a friend who didn't intend on using hers gave us a second roll. We recently received a postcard from Papillion Sanitation indicating that we could buy additional bags directly through them.


Friday 2nd of June 2017

Thanks for the tip on Papillion Sanitation, Tabitha! I was under the impression they weren't available locally for purchase, but this is helpful for Papillion residents.


Thursday 25th of May 2017

So...they burn the stuff to make cement, because the plastics still have oil in them. So technically not "recycling" Air pollution or land fill, take your pick.


Thursday 25th of May 2017

I suppose that's one way to look at it. It fits the definition of recycling, in my opinion if we're just going off dictionary definitions; but you did pique my curiosity to learn more about the process.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.