Set the record straight on National Recycling Day – Pizza boxes are recyclable

Public Service Announcement: Despite what you may have heard, pizza boxes belong in your recycling bin, but check local guidelines first

McLean, Virginia. — On this National Recycling Day, November 15, the Paper and Packaging Board (P+PB) is raising awareness and clearing up confusion around recycling frequently used items, including America’s favorite takeaway: the box pizza.

Despite growing awareness, confusion remains over which specific items belong in the recycling bin based on specific local recycling guidelines. US citizens consuming approximately three billion pizzas a year, especially during the 5 busiest pizza days (i.e. Halloween, Thanksgiving Eve, New Years, New Years Day and Super Bowl Sunday), there remains a potential 600,000 tons of corrugated boxes up for debate. According to a recent study by the America Forest & Paper Association, “many paper products used daily in the United States have a high community access rate of 80% or more. This means that items like cardboard boxes, newspapers, paper bags, pizza boxes and magazines are widely accepted for recycling.

To clarify conflicting information and take advantage of one of the most recyclable materials in the United States, the Paper and Packaging Board has created an ongoing list of tips to use not just on National Recycling Day, but every day. . They want you to know that these items were made to be recycled and urge you to do your part to keep these items out of landfills by recycling them:

  • Pizza boxes – remove all food and recycle (even with a little fat and cheese)
  • White and colored paper—think stationery, folders, stationery
  • Mail and envelopes (yes, even the ones with windows), greeting cards – if you’re still getting coupons, throw them away too
  • Most of those boxes that pile up when you buy cereal, shoes, cosmetics, medicine
  • Take-out and frozen food containers, including ice cream cartons, provided they are empty and clean
  • Shipping boxes – empty them, break them down so they lie flat and keep them dry
  • Magazines and Newsprint: No need to remove staples or worry about special inks or glossy papers; today’s recycling machines can handle them
  • Juice, tetra pack cartons and milk cartons – make sure to remove all liquids first and replace caps where applicable
  • Wrapping paper free of foil and glitter; including cardboard tube

“On this National Recycling Day, it is crucial that we remember that everyday paper-based products are designed to be easily recycled and that more and more items are becoming recyclable all the time to meet expectations. sustainability-conscious consumers,” says Mary Anne Hansan, President of P+PB. . “Recycling pizza boxes is a perfect example of packaging designed to be recycled and yet the word is only spreading. Pizza is a universal food and corrugated cardboard pizza boxes are also universal. Recovering them can have a huge impact as they can be turned into new packaging and products.

Recycling rules vary by location, and a great way to check local guidelines is to enter your postcode on More information on how and what you can recycle can be found at