Cardboard Recycling

In the Age of COVID-19, it's important to know how to properly recycle cardboard.

How to Properly Recycle Cardboard

Do you have cardboard waste that isn’t being recycled in your business or organization? Waste bans prohibiting the use of corrugated cardboard are becoming more common in municipalities and states.

Regardless of whether or not you live in an area where cardboard recycling is prohibited, it’s a smart and environmentally-friendly practice now, in the midst of COVID-19.

Oregon Wire Bale Ties holding cardboard together
Bales of paper and cardboard ready for transport to the recycling center.

People are staying at home more and ordering more products to be delivered as a result of the increased demand for cardboard—many of which are made from recycled fibers—from packaging suppliers.

Now is the perfect time to implement a cardboard recycling strategy if you’re in charge of waste and recycling in a commercial building, a retail or food service operation, a sports facility, a managed housing property, or any other location that generates cardboard waste.

Getting things going

Check with your current waste hauler and/or recycling provider to see if they offer any options for recycling cardboard and what protocols are required as your first step. If you’re looking for a hauler, ask if they accept mixed cardboard and paper. Most service providers prefer that the cardboard be broken down flat and stored in a clean, dry environment at all times. It’s also not possible to recycle waxed cardboard (often used to ship produce).

Make a list of all the cardboard recycling services in your area and see if any can meet your needs. Check with your local recycling facility to see if you can drop off your cardboard there on a regular basis.

Preparing the cardboard for recycling

Small amounts of cardboard may be stored in your shipping and receiving area if your location only generates a small amount of cardboard per pick-up cycle. Compactors and balers, on the other hand, may be useful for handling larger volumes. Another option is to put a dumpster on the property for cardboard recycling. This is a low-cost and simple option that keeps cardboard out of the regular trash and in a specific location for recycling.

Alternatives for reusing your cardboard waste

Sing Loop Galvanized Bale Ties from Oregon Wire
Bale Ties

Cardboard balers are an excellent investment for businesses that generate a lot of cardboard waste, such as those that require their own packaging materials.  Balers are used in many industries, such as recycling, print, retail, workshops, logistics, and hotels.

A vertical or horizontal cardboard baler suits any business that wants to reduce the volume of their waste streams and produce dense bales out of it.  Facilities that decide to bale typically have adequate warehouse, ample storage area as well as flooring for the equipment and for the finished bundles.

Oregon Wire is the Pacific Northwest’s Premier manufacturer of Bale Ties and distributor of boxed bale wire.  Oregon Wire produces the strongest bale ties available in multiple gauges and length.  The size gauge of wire you use will be determined by the weight of the cardboard bales being created, and the length is determined by your bale size and style of baler.  For customers who use a continuous feed baler, Oregon Wire offers boxed wire in 10-, 11- and 12-gauge sizes in both 50- and 100-pound boxes.  For industrial customers who use a Two-Ram shear baler, Oregon Wire offers High Tensile Galvanized Wire by the stem or stand.

To summarize, cardboard is a commodity that can be recycled or sold to those in need, allowing you to save or earn money. Because three tons of trees are needed to produce one ton of virgin cardboard, the packaging industry’s supply chain relies heavily on recycling. Cardboard has the added benefit of being recyclable five or more times, extending the useful life of the product.

Is there anything else we can help you with? We’d be delighted to hear from you.