How is corrugated cardboard recycled? - Our Daily Green

Thursday, July 9, 2015

How is corrugated cardboard recycled?

photo courtesy of: Wikimedia Commons
As more and more consumers and businesses begin to utilize mail order shopping, the market for corrugated cardboard continues to increase. The good news from an environmental viewpoint is that cardboard is easily recycled and reused, in a simple process. So how do cardboard boxes get recycled?

The corrugated cardboard is separated and then bundled with equipment such as the QCR balers. Baling the cardboard allows for efficient and space-saving transportation, saving valuable resources.

Once the cardboard is put into a bale, it is sent back to the paper mill to be reprocessed.

photo courtesy of:
Chris 73 / Wikimedia Commons
At the mill, the corrugated cardboard bale is broken open and the cardboard is put into a vat with water and an agitator, somewhat like a big blender. The resulting pulp is then strained for contaminants, such as metal staples, ropes, or plastic straps.

The fiber solution then is pressed between rollers to remove additional water. It heads to a dryer where it is rolled onto spools weighing up to 60 tons. Those spools of pressed fiber then are separated into individual rolls weighing up to 3 tons, and the paper rolls are ready to be turned into the 3 layer product we know as corrugated cardboard.

We'd like to thank today's post sponsor for ongoing work towards
 environmentally responsible waste management and recycling. 


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