Recycled Cardboard: A Real Money Maker 2/6/2009 8:42:20 AM

Cardboard is a generic term for a heavy duty paper based product. often used for folding cartons, set-up boxes and packaging. The material is a strong, versatile packaging material that is universally accepted for recovery and recycling. Making the pulp from trees for use in corrugated cardboard creates sulfur dioxide pollution. Recycling corrugated cardboard into new products cuts the pollution generated by half.

You may find this information useful:

  • Over 90% of all products in the U.S. are shipped in corrugated cardboard boxes. 70% of all corrugated is recovered for recycling—the largest source of waste paper collected for recycling.
  • Corrugated is more environmentally friendly than ever, able to accept non-toxic water-based inks and also to be processed without bleaching.
  • Corrugated packaging is a $17 billion per-year industry—the largest segment of the entire packaging industry.
  • Corrugated is often made of recycled content and almost always made of post-consumer material.

It is no surprise then that since it is engineered for increased strength using less raw materials, a process called “lightweighting”, many creative people have found alternative use of this ubiquitous material which can be  more profitable than just resell it for recycling.  From incredible corrugated sculptures to eco-friendly furniture, we’re  amazed by inspired new uses for cardboard. Take a look at the following examples:

  • BoxCycle allows people or organizations (retailers) with extra boxes on hand to list them on its site, including how many they have, what sizes they are, where they are located and when the boxes can be picked up. Buyers can then search for sellers based on location or price, reserve their boxes by arranging a pickup appointment, and pay for their purchase online. Check our article about them here.
  • Clever designers have found innovative methods to  use it, creating from portable toilets to entire rooms. Check our review of several innovative cardboard artists here.
  • Diseño Cartonero’s products are eco-friendly, made of 100% recycled materials and seek to fulfill an utilitarian need, not relegating aesthetics though. In addition, every single detail is considered in the fully-craft making process.Every product made is unique and not repeated, with its creator’s impressions on each and every one of them, which therefore makes every object not only a design one, but artistic as well.

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