Online purchases now make up 9.1% of all U.S. retail sales, according to the Department of Commerce. All those sales mean more individual boxes being shipping to customers’ homes — and in turn more boxes that need recycling.
Cardboard is a great material to recycle because it’s clean, easy to reprocess and every ton of it that's reclaimed saves 17 trees, said Reed.
The most important thing when recycling boxes is simply to break them down flat. Otherwise they take up so much room in the recycling trucks that they have to make extra trips, requiring more energy and eating up all the net good recycling would have done in the first place.
“Get yourself a razor knife from the hardware store so you can easily slice the boxes up,” said Reed.
Packages closed with paper tape don’t require anything more than flattening. Boxes with a single strip of plastic tape are okay too. If you get one with a lot of heavy-duty, wide plastic tape, it’s worth taking a moment to peel one end up so you can pull the whole strip tape off.
“The strong adhesive in some tapes can create a problem at the paper mill,” said Reed.
But don’t feel like you’ve got to remove every single bit of plastic tape and only throw pristine cardboard into the bin, he said. "The recycling process will take care of it."
As you engage in the oddly satisfying task of breaking down boxes, ponder that everything you're tossing in the recycle bin will most likely come back to you next year.
Many of the the items we order online are made in China, notes Reed. Those items come in cardboard boxes. The boxes are made in China.
And what are they made from? You guessed it — recycled paper from the United States.
ref. USA Today
But, with a new type box hitting the market.... re-NewBOX Patented Technology these boxes use zero tape or glue and with a simple squeeze they release and unfold. so, back to flat in a flash.
These boxes use less material to make, ship and store flat for Manufactures, retail stores and consumers. They were designed with the overall savings in mind of time, space with eliminating waste.
There are 2 brands check them out online. Both can be used to replace the common shipping box.