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Did you know that almost all the tea bags and coffee pads we use in the Netherlands are compostable? So throw them away with your vegetable, fruit and garden (VGF) waste.

Many people were already throwing coffee pods and tea bags into the GFT bin by feel. Plastic in the filter material contaminated the compost. The industry has now removed that plastic. Coffee and tea producers in the Netherlands agreed with the central government to make their coffee pads and tea bags from fully compostable material.

88 million kilos of additional compost

As many as 93 per cent of tea bags and 97 per cent of all coffee pads are now compostable, according to the industry association Coffee & Tea Netherlands, according to a Rijkswaterstaat sample. All coffee pods and tea bags that are now allowed with the VGF waste, provide about 88 million kilos of extra compost, according to the industry association. Good for agriculture and horticulture, so crops can grow better and for your own garden.

Attention: coffee capsules in residual waste

Coffee capsules (cups) do belong in residual waste. Compostable coffee capsules, like many other hard plastics, often do not break down, or do not break down sufficiently, in composting plants. In the longer term, manufacturers want to try to properly recycle aluminium cups. Plans for this are still in the works.

What can and cannot go with fruit, vegetable and garden waste?

Wondering what else goes with the vegetable, fruit and garden waste and what doesn't? View our separation rules for kitchen waste, fine garden waste, animals and waste separation tools.

For more tips, visit