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Are Corrugated Cardboard Boxes Eco-Friendly?

The environment has been a hot topic in recent years, especially with the looming threat of climate change on the horizon. In light of this wave of eco-consciousness, consumers are pressuring businesses to switch to greener processes and materials. But going green is easier said than done.

If your business wants to become more environmentally responsible, one area you’ll need to re-examine is your product packaging. Not all packaging materials are good for the environment—in fact, some materials are downright harmful. One question you might have is, “Are corrugated cardboard boxes eco-friendly?”

Corrugated boxes are one of the most popular solutions for packaging and shipping. Will you need to ditch them in your pursuit for a greener world, or are they eco-safe and ethical to use? Let’s find out.


Corrugated cardboard is made chiefly from wood pulp, which is a biodegradable material. This means that bacteria and other organisms can easily and swiftly break it down. On average, corrugated boxes take three months to decompose. That might sound like a long time, but it’s actually impressively fast!

Most materials take much longer to break down. Plastic takes 500 years to decompose, and aluminum takes around 200, as examples. Other materials, such as glass, Styrofoam, and tinfoil, are non-biodegradable and can remain in the environment for thousands to millions of years.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Remember the three R’s—reduce, reuse, and recycle? You can do all three of these things with corrugated cardboard boxes.

Most corrugated cardboard boxes are made from a high percentage of recycled materials such as cartons and newspapers. This makes them recyclable, too! Once someone finishes using a corrugated cardboard box, they can take it down to their local recycling center or place it in a curbside recycling bin for collection. Alternatively, if they have a garden, they can compost their box and use it as fertilizer for their plants.

But disposing of or recycling corrugated cardboard boxes aren’t the only options. Corrugated cardboard boxes are also reusable. You can reuse them to ship other items or even use them as storage containers.

Energy Saver

Because most corrugated cardboard boxes are constructed out of recycled materials, they take less energy to make than boxes made from 100 percent new materials. Most box manufacturers source their wood pulp/recycled material locally, as well, which cuts down on transportation and environmental emissions.

So, are corrugated cardboard boxes eco-friendly? Yes—in fact, they’re one of the most eco-friendly kinds of boxes out there. Looking to buy corrugated boxes and other eco-friendly packaging materials? Pantero has everything you need to ship your products safely and protect the planet at the same time. Come and shop with us today!

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