We use cardboard boxes to ship millions of items from candy to diamonds. Right now 400 million tons of paper and cardboard is being manufactured worldwide. In the United States 90% of goods are shipped in a cardboard box and that’s why its the highest waste item in your trash. Luckily 91% of cardboard is recycled which saves us 700 gallons or water, and 41 gallons of oil. Here is the process for how cardboard is recycled.
The first step is collecting all of your cardboard to be picked up or dropped off at your local recycling plant.
The second step is sorting out the cardboard by seeing if it’s boxboard or corrugated cardboard. Boxboard is like cereal boxes, cardboard drink containers, and any thin non-coated cardboard. Corrugated cardboard is the big shipping boxes.
The third step is pulping which turns the cardboard into a liquid state.
The fourth step is filtering of the ink from the boxes.
The fifth and final stage is mixing the pulp and virgin materials and then they are dried on a table. Then new cardboard is shipped to cardboard companies so the process starts again.
To recycle cardboard in Muncie, you can place it in your blue bag or drop it off at East Central Recycling if you have larger amounts that don’t fit in your bag. You can also use cardboard as a free biodegradable weed mat when gardening, laying it down before applying mulch or topsoil. The Muncie Central Recycling Club at Muncie Central High School also collects CLEAN cardboard to raise money to support their recycling program throughout the Muncie Community School District.
You can place unused cardboard in your blue bags to be picked up, or take them to East Central Recycling located at 701 E. Centennial Ave for free.