New recycling studies support better life cycle analysis for pizza boxes in United States
The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) recently released new paper industry guidance with a goal of minimizing consumer confusion regarding the recyclability of pizza boxes. The guidance resulted from a study that found the presence of grease and cheese at levels typically found on pizza boxes does not impact manufacturing in a negative way.
Details of the study and the AF&PA guidance can be found here: https://afandpa.org/media/2020/07/13/af-pa-and-industry-partners-aim-to-set-the-record-straight-pizza-boxes-are-recyclable-grease-and-cheese-not-an-issue
“Corrugated pizza boxes are successfully recycled every day at paper mills throughout the country, yet consumers remain confused by mixed messages suggesting that some boxes should not be put in the recycle bin,” said AF&PA President and CEO Heidi Brock. “So, let’s be clear: pizza boxes are recyclable. Consumers should not be concerned about grease or cheese – simply remove any leftover pizza and place the box in the recycle bin. We encourage communities to update their residential recycling programs guidelines to explicitly accept pizza boxes that are free of food.”
Ahlstrom-Munksjö has an extensive history of providing food packaging papers to the Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) industry, including components of pizza boxes.
“One of the key performance requirements of QSR applications, and specifically pizza boxes is grease resistance,” explained Jeff Murphy, Vice President of Ahlstrom-Munksjö’s Food Business Unit. “Ahlstrom-Munksjö offers a full range of grease-resistance capabilities including our proprietary FluoroFree® technology that creates optimum grease and oil resistance without the use of traditional chemicals known as PFAS.”
Ahlstrom-Munksjö collaborates with customers to create innovative products designed to meet their unique performance objectives and sustainability goals, including recyclability and compostability. This cooperative design process delivers both enhanced performance and an improved end-of-life story.
“A key part of creating a truly sustainable food packaging solution is having a robust set of sustainability tools to leverage at the forefront,” Murphy further explained. “From our trulyNatural® pulp offerings, to maintaining strict Chain of Custody Forestry standards with multiple certification schemes (FSC®, SFI®, PEFC™) our food packaging team digs deep to address the true root of our customers’ needs.”
Learn more about Ahlstrom-Munksjö’s food packaging solutions.