Milk and juice cartons have a simple, classic design that has been part of daily life for generations. To prevent them from ending up in landfills, Recycle Away is partnering with the Carton Council of North America to donate recycling containers to New York City Schools.

More than 600 specially designed milk and juice carton recycling containers are being provided to the New York City Department of Education (DOE) for distribution to multiple schools throughout the five boroughs. The purpose of this donation is to help expand the schools' recycling efforts, making it easier for students and faculty to recycle and bringing greater awareness to the importance of recycling.

Sharon Jaye, Director of Sustainability for the NYC Department of Education, strives to bring attention to the importance of recycling to the schools and reducing the city's impact on the earth. "We are thrilled to receive these milk and juice carton recycling containers," said Jaye. "They reinforce the importance and ease of recycling cartons to our students with their eye-catching design and graphics. We know that habits developed at school transfer to behaviors at home, so the impact spreads in a more meaningful way across the city."

Cartons are highly recyclable and are used to make paper products such as tissue, paper towels and writing paper. Some companies even use the material from cartons to produce sustainable building materials. The Carton Council is a group of carton manufacturers that came together to help build a stronger infrastructure in the United States for recycling cartons. Before their efforts began, only 18 percent of the U.S. communities could recycle cartons in their neighborhood recycling programs. Now, more than 53 percent can, and that number is growing all the time. In addition to being able to recycle cartons in New York City Schools, cartons can be recycled through residential recycling programs and drop-off locations.

"The average U.S. school of 545 students consumes around 75,000 cartons each year," said Derric Brown, vice president of Sustainability for the Carton Council and director of Sustainability at Evergreen Packaging. "That's a lot of valuable material. We saw a need to support school milk and juice carton recycling, and Recycle Away allowed for many more schools to be involved in this process."


The Carton Council is composed of four leading carton manufacturers, Elopak, SIG Combibloc, Evergreen Packaging and Tetra Pak, as as well as an associate member, Weyerhaeuser. Formed in 2009, the Carton Council works to develop long-term collaborative solutions in order to divert valuable cartons from the landfills. Through a united effort, the Carton Council is committed to building a sustainable infrastructure for carton recycling nationwide and works toward their continual goal of adding access to carton recycling throughout the U.S.