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Germany is a wealthy country in Western Europe.

"Containern", as dumpster diving is called in Germany, is just easy - no chemicals and relatively little trouble with police/security (it might depend on a region - for example, Bavaria and its main city Munich are more conservative than most of other German lands). Dumpster diving is somehow tolerated, and some vendors from local food markets purposely leave a completely excellent produce so that dumpster divers would have a better and safer meal.

To see more detailed info on each city and town in Germany, please see the template at the bottom of this page.

Dumpster diving

Legal note

First of all, dumpstering in Germany is illegal. You have to know this, and you mustn't be surprised if police come to check your identity. The best way to deal with these situations is to be conversative: talk to them, explain what you are doing, why you are doing it and ask what is bad about it.

There are known cases of store employees coming out and angrily asking the individual to stop dumpster diving, however, when talked very politely to, they leave dumpster divers in peace (see for more info here, in German).

If you get accused of dumpstering, it might be a good idea to answer "Oh good, I always wanted to tell people why I do that", and you can talk to the supermarket administration about that, do demonstrations while other people are shopping, etc. See more info on workshops for creative anti-repression.

Check as well private brown containers especially provided for organic garbage (Biomüll)they are usually full with bread and delicatessen.

So far, noone has been finally convicted for dumpster-diving in Germany.



In living areas it is quite common to walk the street and find some furniture and other stuff in good shape right on a sidewalk. Some really cool people even include user's manuals and spare parts. A sign that reads "zu verschenken" (which basically means "for taking away") might be attached.

Good stuff doesn't stay very long, and it usually takes one or two days for the city-recyclers to come and clean it up, so be quick.

German pages in this Wiki

Dumpster Divers' Manifest

Useful links

All websites are in German unless otherwise noted.


Aachen | Augsburg | Bad Segeberg | Berlin | Bremen | Chemnitz | Dresden | Duisburg | Essen | Nürnberg | Frankfurt am Main | Fulda | Halle | Hamburg | Hannover | Henstedt-Ulzburg | Karlsruhe | Kiel | Köln | Konstanz | Leipzig | Luebeck | Magdeburg | Munich | Münster | Melle | Mülheim an der Ruhr | Olching | Ravensburg | Rostock | Speyer | Überlingen | Wangen | Wiesbaden

add a new place in Germany?