Service Notice and COVID-19

Egg Cartons - Recycle or Reuse or Trash

Eggs are a staple in our diet being used in cooking, Easter fun, and the all-American breakfast.

In fact, each person in the country consumes more than 270 eggs every year meaning hundreds of thousands of egg cartons will either wind up in the trash, find a second use, or be recycled.

County Waste in Clifton Park encourages its customers to know the different kinds of egg cartons to properly dispose of them or recycle them. You can make an environmentally friendly choice with something as simple as an egg carton.

Eggs come in all shapes and sizes to meet consumer demand and, with the different eggs come different packaging options. Being aware of the packaging options when you buy your eggs will ensure the carton winds up in the right place after use. 

County Waste NY customers, please discard your egg cartons as follows:

  • Paper cartons go in the Recycling cart
  • Styrofoam cartons go in the Trash Cart
  • Clear plastic cartons go in the Recycling cart

Paper Egg Cartons – Recycling Cart

Paper Egg Cartons

Paper egg cartons are made from molded pulp which is a mix of recycled papers, cardboard and other materials. As an added benefit for the consumer and the environment, molded pulp is less expensive than some other materials and molded pulp is often considered a sustainable packaging material since it is already produced from recycled materials and can be recycled again after its useful life cycle.

While paper cartons can go straight into the recycling bin, there are many other creative uses for a paper carton in the home and the garden and, if not contaminated, can be put in recycling after the second use.

Styrofoam (Polystyrene) Egg Cartons – Trash Cart

Styrofoam Egg Cartons

Because there is no local market for Styrofoam in most areas including ours, these cartons go straight into the trash. Styrofoam is widely used in products from construction materials to kitchen plates. While Styrofoam cartons can’t be recycled, there are many creative uses to give a Styrofoam carton a second life.

Clear Plastic Egg Cartons – Recycling Cart

Clear Plastic Egg Carton

Clear plastic egg cartons can be put in Knoxville residential recycling cart. These cartons are generally made from recycled plastics and are recyclable themselves.

Creative uses for egg cartons 

Even if the egg carton your eggs come in can’t be recycled, it doesn’t need to go straight into the trash. There are several creative ways to give egg cartons a second life, including:

  • Give them to a neighbor/friend who has chickens and your carton will likely be used multiple times;
  • Cartons can make a great paint pallet for young artists’ craft projects;
  • Plastic cartons can be ice trays for special events;
  • Their design makes them handy for sorting and storing small items;
  • Many cartons are ideal for starting seedlings.

With Americans eating more than 270 eggs every year, proper recycling and the reuse of egg cartons can keep valuable resources out of our landfills and maybe even spark some great new uses to give egg cartons a second life.

More helpful articles:


Last Modified:

All Articles