Domino’s, one of the largest pizza companies in the world based on global retail sales, wants to see customers recycle their pizza boxes. Today, the company and its primary box supplier, WestRock, are launching recycling.dominos.com – a website to share the facts about box recycling.
The website is a hub of information on pizza box recycling, including instructions on how to recycle boxes, and a guide for what to do if a customer’s community does not accept pizza boxes for recycling.
Recycle even if there’s grease and cheese
Contrary to popular belief, pizza boxes are recyclable, even if they have some grease on them. To reduce confusion and encourage Americans to recycle their boxes, WestRock conducted a research study that evaluated the impact of typical amounts of grease and residual cheese.
The study was reviewed by member companies of the American Forest & Paper Association. It concluded that the presence of typical amounts of grease and residual cheese does not affect the quality of finished corrugated product containing expected levels of recovered fibres.
“Because nearly everything that leaves a Domino’s store leaves in a corrugated box, we know we have an opportunity to make a difference when it comes to packaging and recycling,” said Tim McIntyre, the company’s Executive Vice President of Communications.
“Our goal is that our customers will set aside any misconceptions they have around the recyclability of pizza boxes, read the facts and put their empty box in the recycling bin – or call their municipality and ask them to add these boxes to their collection.”
Urging recycling programmes to accept pizza boxes
A total of 73% of the U.S. population is estimated to have recycling programmes available for pizza boxes, according to a Resource Recycling Systems access study commissioned by WestRock in fall 2019.
While 27% of the population is served by programmes with explicit acceptance of boxes, 46% of the population has access to programmes that imply, but don’t say specifically, that they accept pizza boxes. The remainder are either unclear or say they cannot take pizza boxes.
The company and WestRock are both members of The Recycling Partnership – a nonprofit dedicated to improving access to and quality of recycling. Domino’s, WestRock and a second box supplier partnered to fund The Recycling Partnership’s development of materials for municipalities to update their recycling programmes to include these boxes.
Consumers can find a link to The Recycling Partnership’s toolkit on recycling.dominos.com, which they can send to their local recycling programmes to encourage them to accept pizza boxes into their system.
From 40% to 72% recyclable content in their boxes
Together with WestRock earlier in 2020, Domino’s increased the recycled content in its boxes from 40% to 72%. The company recognises the importance of not just recycling and using recycled content, but also the importance of planting trees.
Domino’s is partnering with One Tree Planted to plant 50,000 trees across North America. Customers are invited to vote on social media for the region(s) where trees will be planted.