• Corrugated cardboard is very popular and used to make boxes for shipping. It is comprised of corrugated fiber paper, sandwiched by sturdy sheets of cardboard. Once this cardboard has been deposited into the trash or recycling bin, it is referred to in the industry as old corrugated cardboard, or OCC.
  • Paperboard (also called boxboard or chipboard) is flat, stiff and often coated to give a glossy appearance. It is used for items such as cereal boxes, beverage cartons, shoeboxes and tissue boxes. Paperboard is not cardboard, but people often confuse the two.

What You Need to Know

  • Cardboard is used to ship 90 percent of all products in the U.S.
  • Most cardboard waste comes from big companies, such as department stores and supermarkets.
  • Recycled cardboard only takes 75 percent of the energy needed to make new cardboard and lessens the emission of sulfur dioxide that is produced when making pulp from wood trees.
  • Recycling 1 ton of cardboard saves 9 cubic yards of landfill space and 46 gallons of oil.
  • Cardboard is safe to dispose of as it has no toxic constituents and is biodegradable.
  • The recovery rate of OCC was 78.3 percent in 2007.