Trash Talk: Commercial Trash and Waste Solutions

Trash Talk: Commercial Trash and Waste Solutions

Keeping your business clean and your sustainability goals on track with the right waste solutions at your disposal.

Trash might be the least glamorous thing to talk about in the restaurant but it's too important to overlook. The U.S. foodservice industry generates an estimated 571,000 tons annually of food waste alone, that doesn't even include additional products like disposables that often go straight to the landfill. In this buying guide we'll talk trash can types, materials and eco-friendly options for those who want to divert some of their waste out of the landfill and into reusable materials.

Types of Trash Cans

Trash cans come in a variety of shapes and sizes to suit the needs of different spaces within your restaurant. Read on to learn more.

Heavy Duty

Heavy Duty

These are your heavy duty, high capacity trash cans often found in the back of house. Often equipped with handles for easy dumping, make sure you equip you this trash can with a dolly for easier transportation out to the dumpster.

Slim Styles

Slim Styles

Featuring a narrow footprint perfect for the front or back of house, these slim trash cans can be placed practically anywhere. These slim-style trash cans (seen in Rubbermaid's Slim Jim® or Carlisle's Trimeline™ series) are often used in the three-bin system to help with waste diversion.

Hooks

Tilt Trucks

Ideal for hotels, schools and institutions, tilt trucks are known for their large capacities (try 450 lbs) and unique maneuvering capabilities for making large trips out to the dumpster.

Half Round

Half Round

For tight kitchens, busy event spaces and more, try opting for a half round trash can that fits comfortably against the wall. For bins placed in customer view, consider stainless steel options like this one from Simple Human.

Step On

Step On

Ideal for the front of house or in restrooms, step on trash cans keeps waste out of sight while being conveniently hands-free.

Bullet

Bullet

Simple and sleek, these types of indoor trash cans hide trash liners and feature a simple hole at the top for waste.

Waste Chutes

Waste Chutes

Not quite a trash can on their own, a waste chute helps funnel trash into a hidden bin. More aesthetically pleasing and perfect for maximizing space, waste chutes help with efficiency and keeping your areas clean. You'll find waste chutes in many fast casual concepts, where 3-bin waste systems are hidden in custom cabinetry to match the design of the dining room.

Tabletop

Tabletop

Great for condiment stations, these tiny table-top receptacles keep your coffee bar tidy by housing sugar packets, stirrers, and other packaging guests might otherwise leave on the counter.

Events

Events

Planning your next outdoor event? Stock up on a few temporary, compostable bins that can be used to collect anything from compostable waste, to recyclable and landfill waste.

Sanitary Napkin Disposal

Sanitary Napkin Disposal

Avoid a plumbing disaster by equipping your ladies' room with sanitary napkin disposal trash cans.

Outdoor Trash Can With Urn

Outdoor Trash Can With Urn

Avoid scattered cigarette butts on your pathways and greenery by giving customers a designated collection area that's seamlessly integrated in your outdoor trash receptacles.

Types of Lids

Lids might seem straightforward, you'd be surprised at how much a lid can affect the productivity and efficiency of your trash solution.

Fully Sealed

Fully Sealed

Durable, fully sealed lids help contain smells and reduce the risk of spills that might occur when transporting trash out to the dumpster. Because you need both hands free to remove the lid and throw something away, they are less efficient when not in transport.

Open Top

Open Top

Why mess with a classic when simple is sometimes best? When it comes to trash cans keep it simple for customers with an open top.

Swing Lid

Swing Lid

Great at concealing waste and containing odors, swing lids often come in matching colors found in the three-bin system. Make sure you train staff to regularly wipe the lid from spills and other debris that might collect over time.

Funnel Lid

Funnel Lid

Funnels are great at catching waste when customers are on the go.

Dome Hinged Lid

Dome Hinged Lid

Similar to the swing lid but featuring a different silhouette, these lids are great when you want to conceal waste and contain odors.

Recycling

Recycling

Many recycling lids feature one or two holes to encourage customers to only place plastic or glass bottles and other recyclable waste in the bin. You'll be surprised just how much you reduce hours spent sorting waste!

Material Considerations

When choosing what type of trash can to get, also consider what it's made out of. Read on to learn more about the basic types of trash cans you'll find.

Metal

Metal

Made from varying grades of steel, metal offers restaurants a durable and attractive trash receptacle option that's perfect for the dining room, restroom and other customer-facing areas. Plus, with stainless steel it's very easy to clean!

Plastic

Plastic

What plastic trash cans lack in aesthetics they more than make up for in long-lasting durability. Strong and unaffected by wet and dry environments alike, most trash cans these days are made of plastic. And unlike metal trash cans, scratches and dents will not be as visible.

Stone

Stone

Commonly found outdoors, trash cans made from a combination of stone and steel work well outdoors, where they blend into natural elements.

Sustainability

If you're thinking about waste, we also hope you're thinking about how to reduce it. Not only is going green better for the environment, but it can also make you some green too! Think about the cost savings to be had when you reduce your trash output or the extra traffic you'll get from customers who want to support eco-friendly restaurants.

When it comes to sustainability, starting small is better than not starting at all. Here are a few easy ways to tackle waste within your restaurant.

Three-Bin System

Three-Bin System

The "three-bin system" refers to a waste diversion stream and is often synonymous with those wanting to achieve their sustainability goals. Comprised of 3 separate bins designated for recycling, composting and landfill, this 3-stream waste management is a great step to reducing waste in the restaurant. When featured in the front of house, consider keeping color cues (blue, green and black) for waste diversion streams visible so that customers quickly and easily understand which waste to put where. Just make sure you also pick up this 3 Compartment Dolly from Rubbermaid for easy transport!

Think the three-bin system is just a front of house solution? Wrong! We challenge you to equip your kitchen with more compostable bins near prep areas to help divert that waste from the landfill. You'll be surprised just how much waste you'll reduce in your regular trash pickups!

Restroom Waste

If your restroom is equipped with paper towels, we encourage you to set up a compost bin nearby. Equip the bin with a sign that reads "Compost Only" and tell customers why you're making the eco-friendly swap. Environmentally conscious customers like to support businesses who share the same values as themselves and trust us, they'll notice and appreciate your efforts.

Accessories and Parts

There's no avoiding the amount of abuse your trash bins will face. That said, many manufacturers offer replacement parts to help extend the life of your products.

Dollies

Dollies

Hauling heavy loads of waste is made a lot easier with a dolly. Dollies are an inexpensive way to increase your productivity and prevent undue strain on your employees' back. The best part is that dollies can be used for moving a lot more than just trash cans! Pick up few and we promise it'll be one of the best investments you'll ever make.

When it comes to sustainability, starting small is better than not starting at all. Here are a few easy ways to tackle waste within your restaurant.

Liners

Liners

Like the hot dog to a bun, the ketchup to your fries, the trash can liner is essential to every trash can. Not only helping you avoid unsightly leaks dripping to the floor, not to mention keeping foul odors at bay as well, always keep a trash can liner on hand in every bin. Plus, with compostable options from Natur Bag, you don't have to worry about liners hampering your sustainability goals ever again!

Replacement Parts

Replacement Parts

Make the most out of your investment by stocking up on the right parts to keep it working like new. We carry more than 500 different Rubbermaid parts to help you in a jiff, including casters, extra lids, handles and much more. Don't suffer with a broken caster—fix it with help from us!

Shop Trash Solutions by Category

Shop Restroom Supplies by Brand