Next time we purchase or use anything plastic look out for the numbered triangle . The number inside has a significance. The number printed inside the arrows is the plastic identification code.


1 – This is made of PETE (polyethylene terephthalate). This one is in highest demand from manufacturers because it is inexpensive and lightweight. Please know that these PET bottles are for one-time use only. Reuse releases chemicals can cause breast and uterine cancer as well as an increased risk of miscarriage, and decreased testosterone levels.

2 – This is made of HDPE (high density polyethylene). It is therefore ok to reuse these plastic bottles provided you wash them with warm (not hot !!) soapy water after each use to prevent the growth of bacteria.

3 – This indicates V (Vinyl) or PVC. It is not entirely recyclable and can release a lot of harmful dioxins into the air. Do not sniff or eat from PVC

4 – This implies LDPE (low density polyethylene). It is completely safe to re-use provided it is washed with soapy water after every use.


5 – This indicates PP (polypropylene). This is also extremely reusable and safe. It has a high meting point and therefore makes a good material for containers that must hold hot food. The plastic can be washed and reused any number of times before final recycling.


6 – This is PS (polystyrene). This is difficult to recycle and is definitely not reusable. Recycle or trash these plastic items after one use and do not attempt to wash and reuse these. Also, never ever use this grade of plastic in the microwave. Takeaway plastic containers from restaurants are made of this grade of plastic, so transfer the food into a safer container as soon as possible.


7 – indicates Other implying plastics, including acrylic, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene, fiberglass, nylon, polycarbonate, and polylactic acid. #7 is a catch all category for plastics that don’t fit into the #1-6 categories. Some may be labeled #7 – other – but are not polycarbonate. Do not reuse this plastic at all.

So, Make use of correct Plastic and Contribute in Swach Bharat!!!