Waxed Cardboard

Alternative ways to recycle

Waxed cardboard should always be placed in the trash.

Wax = Plastic
The “wax” that can be scraped off is actually polyethylene, a plastic that keeps the cardboard from getting soggy. Waxed cardboard is mostly used by retailers for shipping produce.

Glossy Is Not Waxed
Glossy cardboard and paperboard containers are not waxed. If you cannot scrape the “wax” off with a fingernail, it’s most likely paperboard and acceptable in the recycling, although it may have recycling limitations.

Alternative Ways to Recycle

Enviro-Log Recycling Program

Recycling company Enviro-Log offers retailers a recycling program for waxed cardboard. Retailers who are interested in participating can have their waxed cardboard diverted from the landfill and sent to Enviro-Log, where it will be repurposed. Interested retailers can find out more here.

Did You Know?

50-Year-Old Boxes

Because of their chemical coating, waxed cardboard boxes can take up to 50 years to break down in a landfill. Annually we send 600,000 tons of them to landfills.