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About Our Materials Recovery Facility

Baltimore County officially opened its single stream recycling Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) on November 19, 2013. The MRF is located at the Central Acceptance Facility (CAF) in Cockeysville, which also includes a residents' drop-off center and municipal solid waste (trash) transfer facility.

What Is a MRF?

A MRF is a facility that receives, sorts and prepares recyclable materials for marketing. Baltimore County's MRF is equipped to sort "single stream" recyclables—a mixture of paper, plastic and metal items. The highly automated sorting equipment contains 86 conveyor belts, six sorting screens, three optical sorters and two balers. Workers are also stationed along the conveyor belts to screen out material missed by the sorting equipment.

Recycling Is Revenue for the County

By marketing the recyclables that have been sorted at the Cockeysville MRF, Baltimore County is able to retain the value of these materials and maximize the financial benefits of its single stream recycling program. The facility proved financially successful—in just its first six months of operation, the MRF generated net operating revenues of nearly one million dollars. You have a direct impact on the County’s success—the more you recycle, the more money the County will earn.

Tours Available

Baltimore County offers free public tours of its single stream MRF for groups of 10 to 30. For safety reasons, tours are restricted to fourth grade students and above. The tours can be scheduled Monday through Friday, with a start time between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. The tour itself lasts approximately 60 to 90 minutes. Because of the group size requirements, preregistration is required for all tours. If you are an individual or a small group, please let us know and we will work with you to add you to an existing scheduled tour. The Bureau of Solid Waste Management accepts tour requests online.

Revised July 26, 2022         


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