Can You Recycle Cardboard Food Containers?

Can You Recycle Cardboard Food Containers?

Although more and more people are opening their eyes to the negative effects of using plastics daily, many still cannot stop ordering food and eating their favourite takeaways at home. It is probably one of the many reasons why restaurant owners have started packaging their meals on the go in cardboard containers. But can you recycle cardboard food containers? Are there cardboard recycling providers in Melbourne that can do it?

The answer is not a quick and resounding yes because we need to consider a few things before we can say that a food container is recyclable.

Is it Clean and Dry?

Considering the container is clean and not a soggy mess, most recycling facilities would accept it. If you think about a pizza box as an example, only some parts of it retain grease. The recyclers could simply tear those parts off and then send the clean portions for recycling.

Unfortunately, if the cardboard is completely soaked in grease or oil or still filled with food residues, recycling facilities might send it to landfills. The reason for this is that there’s simply no cost-effective way to recycle greasy cardboard.

What Type of Cardboard Was Used?

It is also vital to know what kind of cardboard material was used to create the food packaging. For instance, whether it’s corrugated cardboard, paperboard, or recycled paper, there is no doubt that any facility will accept it. The reason is that these materials are mostly easy to break down and will go through the process smoothly.

However, if the cardboard has been waxed or covered with plastic, not all facilities may be able to handle it. Sure, such food containers are effective at containing liquids. However, some recycling facilities might not want to deal with the possibility of the wax or plastic contaminating their new products.

How Can You Dispose of Cardboard Food Containers?

1. Ask Your Local Council

Before your piles of containers grow, you should ask your local council if they could take your cardboard food packages. You’re lucky if you live in an area that has the proper facilities to recycle soiled cardboard materials.

2. Compost the Food Container

In case your local council says no, you may consider composting. Now, composting is only applicable if you are certain that the packaging is made of natural biodegradable materials. It would then be easy to shred everything to pieces and let nature break it down for you. But if you have plastic liners, it might not be the best solution.

3. Contact a Recycling Company

Your last option is to contact a cardboard recycling company near you that could collect the food containers and recycle them. The thing is, it’s important to be honest about what they were used for and how clean or soiled they are so that the recyclers will have an idea of how they can help you.

Final Thoughts

Eating takeaways for breakfast, lunch, or dinner is okay if that’s what makes you happy. Despite that, make sure to dispose of your food containers properly. Contact us if you need help with recycling cardboard in Melbourne.