Are plastic, styrofoam, and cardboard egg cartons recyclable?
This is an excellent question if you’re moving towards a more eco-friendly lifestyle. As you keep reading this blog post, you’ll know whether or not you can reclaim an egg carton.
You’ll also learn about the procedure for reprocessing this waste and more. Let’s review the elements these packages are made up of.
Can You Recycle Egg Cartons?
Egg cartons have a variety of uses. But generally, they are used to keep eggs in perfect condition and convenient for movement.
Research indicates more than 8.2 billion egg cartons are in use annually. A significant percentage of this staple is in the trash yard and affects the surroundings.
But giving this waste a new life will be an efficient way to control and avert its hazards.
What are Egg Cartons Made Of?
These packages are created from either corrugated paper or plastic.
A corrugated paper egg carton is primarily composed of pulp paper. Then the plastic egg carton comes from either polystyrene (Styrofoam) or clear plastic (PET).
You can differentiate the two packages by their physical characteristics. When you tear a paper egg carton, you’ll see various layers of virgin or reclaimed paper sheets. But that isn’t the case with plastic.
Those cartons feel negligibly frothy and look a bit glossy compared to paper.
Can Egg Cartons Be Recycled?
The recyclability of these packages counts on which material they’re composed of.
You can reclaim paper egg cartons because most of their ingredients are highly biodegradable. As such, you can place them in a curbside container just like other reclaimable paper by-products.
Egg Carton Recycling Guide
Reprocessing paper egg cartons is easy and saves energy, water, and landfill space. However, some cartons are difficult or almost impossible to reclaim.
Paper egg cartons that are thin may need to be more vital for reprocessing. Additionally, cartons that fibers have smashed down so much might lose their valuable resources in the cause of recycling.
This is why some installations do not accept such waste. We have other alternatives if paper recyclers near you reject paper egg cartons.
Try checking places such as “National Resources Defense Council, TerraCycle, and Planet Aid.” There’re a few neighborhoods that organize schedules to collect these items.
Reprocessing Plastic Egg Cartons
It’s also possible to reprocess plastic egg cartons made with #1 and #2 plastics.
Such kinds of items are highly biodegradable. Meaning they can decompose over a short period. Many reclaiming industries accept egg cartons made of such material.
Are Styrofoam Egg Cartons Recyclable?
However, egg cartons made of Styrofoam or clear plastic are challenging to reprocess. The reason is that they’re not biodegradable and are composed of harmful chemicals.
Therefore, most reprocessing installations do not welcome them. However, the government or oil and gas industries often support the few that accept such waste.
These establishments have the equipment to extract petroleum and other chemicals from such egg cartons. Moreover, they have all it takes to convert this waste into new products.
PET Egg Carton is Also Reclaimable
You can recycle PET egg cartons like polystyrene or Styrofoam in a blue bin.
According to experts, you can recycle this material up to seven times. Furthermore, reprocessing this kind of egg carton requires fewer resources and produces fewer GHG emissions.
Several organic and free-range suppliers support the take-back program to reuse old egg cartons. If you live in areas without reprocessing establishments, this might be the best way to discard your egg carton.
What Happens at Reprocessing Facilities
Once you’ve dumped this waste egg package in the paper recycling bin (blue), they’ll take them to the corresponding treatment plants.
This waste will undergo several processes until it becomes recovered paper. At this stage, manufacturing industries can use it to create new products.
Clean Your Egg Carton Before Recycling It
When reclaiming your egg carton, ensure it’s free from food residue and other items. Most facilities prefer waste egg cartons to come clean.
Besides, dumping egg cartons with food rubble can significantly impact the reprocessing process. Furthermore, the same cleanliness will be required if you reclaim plastic egg cartons.
You must wash them and allow them dry.
Procedure for Recycling Egg Cartons
There’s no lengthy procedure for reclaiming these packages. No matter which elements your carton is composed of, you can start by dumping them in the curbside bin.
Check your local waste management firms if you don’t have access to a curbside near you. Some might have drop-off locations near your area.
However, some communities have laws requiring you to dump certain classes of plastic egg cartons in the same bins as other recyclables.
Until then, you’ll need to check with your local government regarding reclaiming egg cartons in a curbside bin and drop-off location.
Problems With Reprocessing Egg Cartons
As mentioned earlier, the type of carton you’ll reclaim matters significantly, as certain factors complicate the reclaiming process.
For that, some installations do not take some packages. These factors are carton types, contamination, and handling previously recycled egg cartons.
Let’s briefly review these problems.
Are Cardboard Egg Cartons Recyclable? Yes.
Egg cartons made from paper are more accessible to reclaim than Styrofoam and plastics.
Such kinds of materials are challenging to break down in local reprocessing centers. Only facilities with high-end equipment can handle such waste, and there are few across the country.
Secondly, contamination is a massive challenge for most centers.
Egg cartons are contaminated with food residues or other materials can make the process challenging. Sometimes, it can spoil different non-contaminated piles and machines.
Lastly, reprocessing egg cartons made from reclaimed materials is quite challenging.
Most reclaimed materials tend to lose quality each time they’re reprocessed. Reusing them again needs to be more vital to complete their recycling process.
There’s much more to talk about regarding the recyclability of egg cartons. But with the look of things, we need more time. However, we hope your question has been fully answered.
Now you can see that egg carton are recyclable. But how easy and successful you can reclaim egg cartons depends on their materials.
Furthermore, always contact the reprocessing installations near you for more guidance on handling such waste.