The plant at Wolverton has been run by CROP, a charity which turns refuse into re-usable material, since 1993. Now Milton Keynes BC is looking for a new operator which will do the job more cheaply.
Keith Ely, the council's assistant director of technical services, says the problem is that reinvestment is needed.
He explained: 'Two-and-a-half years ago we were dealing with 20,000 tonnes of material; now we are dealing with 50,000 tonnes of material.
The recycling facility has attracted visitors from public authorities, governments and companies from throughout the UK and many other countries. It handles refuse from a number of local authorities.