Pizza Box Composting

Composting Pizza Boxes
May 14, 2015 
 
College life is getting greener at North Carolina State University.
 
For the past year, the school’s Waste Reduction and Recycling Office has been focusing on an environmentally friendly way to dispose of an extremely common item — the pizza box.
 
Pizza boxes are not recyclable because of the grease and cheese that soaks into the cardboard, so they had the idea to compost the boxes.
 
A year ago, the pizza box composting pilot program began with two dumpsters, but quickly expanded to six to meet the demand. In their first year, they collected more than 8,700 pizza boxes, which stacked together could overtop the Empire State Building.
 
NC State partnered with Brooks Contractor in Goldston, North Carolina to convert the boxes into nutrient-rich soil. As an added bonus, composting can degrade any organic material so paper plates, napkins and pizza crusts are also collected in the bins.
 
The program may soon spread to other schools. You can read more about the pizza box composting pilot program here and about composting in North Carolina here

— Daniel Lane
 
Daniel Lane covers science, engineering, medicine and the environment in North Carolina.

GSK