Are Egg Cartons Recyclable?

Eggs are practically a household staple at this point. They are in tons of recipes and have a lot of nutritious value – some even refer to them as superfoods.

As such, a lot of people try to stock-pile on eggs. And while this comes with its own advantage, it also results in the accumulation of egg cartons in a lot of our homes.

For those of us who are trying to live sustainably, trying to get rid of these cartons can be a real pain. So to help you out, today we are going to answer some major questions around the disposal of egg cartons.

Are egg cartons recyclable?

Cardboard and clear plastic egg cartons can be recycled. All you have to do is toss them in your recycle bin – most curbside recycling programs accept them. As long as they are clean, the recycling process will go on without a hitch.

If you have a compost heap at home, you can toss the cardboard cartons in there instead. This is particularly a great option for wet or food-stained cardboard cartons.

The real disposal problem comes when you’re dealing with foam egg cartons. This is because of the material they are made of – Styrofoam/polystyrene foam.

While this material can be recycled, it is quite expensive to do so. And since the market for it is too small, most recycling facilities don’t offer Styrofoam recycling services.

As a result, a lot of styrofoam ends up in landfills, taking at least 500 years to degrade. To avoid this, you’ll have to do some thorough research to identify the few facilities and municipalities that accept this plastic. Better still, avoid egg cartons or any other product made of this material.

How do you properly dispose of egg cartons?

Plastic egg cartons should always be recycled.

Cardboard ones should be recycled when clean and composted if not.

On the other hand, styrofoam cartons should be delivered to specialized facilities that can recycle them. And if this is not possible, then you have no choice but to throw them in the trash.

Photo by natasha t on Unsplash

Is there anything you can do with egg cartons bags besides just throwing them out?

Before you dispose of all your egg cartons, you can find ways to reuse them. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Use them to feed your birds

An easy way to reuse egg cartons is to use them as bird feeders. Just fill them with some bird feed and hang them on a nearby tree.

Use them to plant seedlings

To do this, just cut off the top of the carton, fill the cups with potting soil, and plant seeds inside.

When your seedlings start to sprout, you can cut out each cup and plant it where you want.

Dampen noise

Interestingly, nailing egg cartons to your walls and ceiling can help muffle noise. So if you regularly record music at home, this is worth a try.

Consider getting reusable egg cartons

To reduce your waste and need to regularly recycle, consider getting reusable egg cartons – some companies provide this option. This way, you can use the same carton for years to come!

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