On an average each American eats around 250 eggs per year and eggs can be considered as staple in American habits. These eggs are easier to cook and can be consumed in various forms like whole boiled, omelet, which are famous ideas for breakfast meal. And once we consume all the eggs, we never think about the egg cartons disposing, reusing or recycling. Instead of that, we straight away put them in the bin. Some people think egg cartons can’t be recycled. So here you will get all the answers regarding can egg cartons be recycled or not?
Can egg cartons be recycled?
Egg cartons are created with different type of materials and are not equal. Commonly they are made with cardboard or Styrofoam and sometimes plastic egg cartons are also available, when we go for a local brand. Therefore, now it becomes more confusing if egg cartons can be recycled or not because of variation in manufacturing materials. Generally, companies which usually recycle used materials have their own set of rules for recycling.
So, now have a glance on these egg carton materials one by one:
Egg cartons made with cardboard can be recycled. Cardboards are usually made up of molded pulp which comprise of used papers and these molded pulp are comparatively cheaper and are considered good for packaging material. And after each useful life cycle, these cardboards can be recycled again and again.
Styrofoam egg cartons can’t be recycled and majority of recycling companies rejects these foam made cartons.
Egg Cartons which are made with clear plastic are recyclable. Always make sure your packaging have recyclable symbol for your safety.
What are the reasons these egg cartons cannot be recycled?
Egg Cartons which are recyclable or not recyclable are mentioned above. But still some of the recycling companies reject all types of cartons, what is the reason for that?
Firstly, egg cartons might get contaminated by food waste like keeping broken egg covers back to the carton due to which it may not be recycled. So, it is required to keep items to be recycled clean. There is another possibility that the egg cartons have been recycled several times before, which in turn would have decreased the useful life cycles of cartons.
If this reason is not considered, then other common reason is local recycling companies not accepting the used egg cartons irrespective of material. So, if these cartons can’t be recycled, then can we reuse and give them a second life.
Other ways to reuse egg cartons
If no options are left for recycling, then disposing might not be a good option. You can either give these cartons a second chance or reuse them.
1. Paint holder
This is a great way to reuse egg cartons, if you or any of your family members likes painting, then egg cartons can be made as paint holder to keep all the colors separately. As the compartments made in these cartons are of equal size and perfect for keeping colors.
Composting means disposing egg cartons into composite pile in which carbon and nitrogen materials are divided into two equal halves. Cardboard egg cartons can be composed, as cardboard is rich in carbon because they are brown items. Therefore, composting egg cartons along with egg shells increases carbon materials in composite pile which helps in creating rich fertilisers.
3. Giving them to local chicken farmers
As long as these egg cartons are clean, you can give them to chicken farmers who can use them to store new eggs.
4. Transporting valuable goods
An egg carton has a great feature of keeping eggs intact and prevents them from breaking during transportation. So, in the same way you can transport your valuable goods from one place to another keeping safely in egg cartons.
5. Use for seedlings
Another way to reuse them is to start seedlings, just add soil and seeds to your egg cartons and give them favourable conditions to grow.
Storing small materials like nuts, bolts or washers, can be done in egg cartons. As these cartons have suitable size of compartments for small materials.
7. Give it to schools
If you are not that much creative then you can pass these egg cartons to the schools in your locality. Students can use these cartons in more creative ways for their various projects.
8. DIY Crafts
On internet you can get hundreds of DIY craft ideas in which egg cartons are used, by the help of which you can make your bedroom more attractive and pleasant.
These were some ideas to start with, you can be more creative using these egg cartons by searching for them online.
Unknowingly, we create a large amount of wastes each and every day, small steps like reusing egg cartons can lead to great environment changes. However, all types of egg cartons cannot be recycled, so don’t just put them in the trash. There are many other options of reusing them more conveniently by which you can play a great part in waste reduction.