Recycle allows the user to regain a held item, such as a Berry, once it has been consumed (even if by Fling or Natural Gift). Consumed items are not forgotten when the Pokémon is switched out. Recycle will fail if the item is collected by a Pokémon with Pickup. Recycle cannot restore items that were transferred to another Pokémon (such as via Thief or Bestow) or items that were negated (such as via Knock Off).
Recycle can recover items consumed that were originally another Pokémon's, but transferred to the Pokémon with Recycle during a battle. However, a Pokémon may only have one consumed item at a time; if a Pokémon consumes an item, then obtains another and consumes it, the original consumed item cannot be restored, even if the second item is restored and transferred to another Pokémon. If the Pokémon that knows Recycle obtains an item after consuming one, it can still use Recycle to restore the old item as long as it has no hold item when using Recycle and did not consume any other items since consuming the old item.
The user recycles a held item that has been used in battle so it can be used again.