As recycling becomes more prevalent in American households, the amount of single stream glass material has become a larger part of our supply base.  Many loads require pre-sorting before processing can begin. 

Strategic Materials has developed quality improvement tools to accurately assess and process incoming glass. Our goal is to process this glass as efficiently as possible while also ensuring it meets our standards and the standards of our manufacturing customers. 

Testing protocols

Strategic Materials performs inbound quality inspections and rates them based on the percentage of usable glass, generally clean glass with minimal or no visible contamination, and amount of ceramic, rock, or color contamination.

Our delivery inspection is either by:

  • Visual inspection - in the case of Mixed Window Plate (MWP), Clear Window Plate (CWP), whole or 3-dimensional flint, amber, green or mixed color or
  • Sample analysis - in the case of 3 Mix (single stream) glass from a Material Recovery Facility (MRF) 

Better supply = better pricing

Our pricing for incoming glass is now tied to the quality of the supply. Key factors that drive processing:

  • Non-Glass Residue % and local landfill rates
  • Undersize %, plant capabilities and local disposal options

Significant variance from these color percentages may reduce or increase the value of cullet stream.

Color Description Examples Normal Target
Amber Brown container glass Beer bottles 80% | 20% other glass
Flint Clear container glass Food and beverage bottles 95% | 5% other glass
Emerald Green (and Others) Various shades of green, blue, and other 7up, Sprite green, wine bottles, blue bottles 60% | 40% other glass
3-Mixed Glass Brown container glass, clear container glass, and shades of green or blue Beer bottles, beverage bottles, wine bottles 50% amber; 30% flint; 20% emerald green
Single Stream Curbside, MRF glass Post-consumer food or beer bottles, other recyclables 78% glass, all colors; 10% non-glass residuals; 12% undersize


Glass specifications


Industry specifications are a key component of our business. It is critical that our product meet or exceed the standards set by each of our manufacturing clients. Want to supply glass for our markets? Learn more about their specifications:

3-MIX Single Stream Specification

Criteria Description Examples Target
NGR Non-Glass-Residual found in municipal recycling program Paper, Plastic, Aluminum, steel 10% Maximum
U/S Undersize Glass particles < 3/8” (or < 1/4”*) Mixed color glass particles 12% Maximum
Other Criteria Target
Ceramics Broken bits of household ceramic Dinner plates, mugs, cups 2% Maximum
Color Flint, Amber, Green(s) & other Food containers, beer bottles, wine/ soda bottles 20-50%
Moisture Excessive water mixed with glass** Rain, snow, ice 5% Maximum
Excluded Waste Other, possibly hazardous waste Any glass ceramic blends, such as PyroCeram or Neoceram, mirror, leaded glass or any CRT glass, batteries, medical waste, or any radioactive, volatile, corrosive, bio-hazardous, toxic, or hazardous material as defined by applicable law 0% (Zero)

Learn more about our supply stream requirements.

*Undersize target depending on plant's capabilities
**See additional description in moisture definitions above

For supplier support please email us at