The Carton Conundrum

The recycling of cartons, sometimes known as aseptic packaging, is tough! Many cartons are paper coated with polyethylene (plastic), or both polyethylene and foil. This mixed material item, is also a very small amount of the total tonnage that City residents generate on daily and yearly basis. So small that it doesn’t even get measured on the City’s recyclables composition. What does all this mean? It means that in the current market of very low margins and inability to market previously easily separated and processed recyclables, Cartons are not being recycled and didn’t have a very good chance even before the recent market downturn. Unless they are being captured separate from mixed paper, they are being thrown in the landfill directly from the sorting facility or after they’ve been sold to a mixed paper processor.

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