Cardboard boxes, also called corrugated fiberboards, are boxes normally used for packaging goods and materials. They are made out of paper or paper-like substances that enable flimsy paper to be rigid. There are many uses for this, such as for drink boxes (called tetra packs), tissue paper tubes, cigarette packs, and cereal boxes. There are three broad divisions for paper-based packaging, namely paper, paperboard, and corrugated fiberboard. Paper is made out of cellulose strands from plants and dried, while paperboard is made of the same materials, but thicker. Corrugated fiberboards are boards with layers of corrugated surfaces. For those of you with businesses, cardboard boxes or cartons are good ways to distribute bulks of products. They are also good for keeping raw materials from suppliers. Cardboard packing is also good for transporting fragile items, especially when the sides and corners are filled with thick paper or bubble wrap.
- Suppliers. With the advent of the Internet, many of cardboard box suppliers, as well as paper suppliers have turned online to sell their wares. They offer variations in cardboard like wood pulp based, ceramic based, handmade, waterproof, and flame retardant to name a few. Many of the cardboard sellers online are ready to ship through FedEx or UPS once the sale pushes through. A 20x20x10 paper cardboard box normally costs $1 a piece, while smaller cardboard tubes are available at $0.50. The prices of cardboard wholesale are lower, with some selling 100 - 20x20x10 boxes for only $0.85. A few good sites to check out are: mrboxonline.com and cheepcheepboxes.com.
- Recycling. If you do not have a packaging business, the times you may normally see cardboard boxes are when you buy things from the store in bulk or when you are moving. However, once you've unloaded the contents of a cardboard box, there may not be a lot of things to do with it. 9% of the world's landfills are made out of cardboard boxes that are not properly decomposing because of their proximity with other kinds of trash, giving out cardboard waste that's bad. Recycling it, however, can save about 390 gallons of oil and 4100 KWH of energy. Some methods for recycling it would be to make it into an ingenious solar box cooker and composting it properly, feeding it to compost worms in a process called vermicomposting. Some people have even built a house of cardboard boxes! These instant houses are built in a day and are a good temporary shelter for people in disaster areas. There are wholesale cardboard recycling centers both locally and internationally. Several have websites on how to contact their branches in your area. One of these companies, Fibres International, is available in selected states in America and some provinces in Canada.
There are many things you can do with cardboard, and many more things you can do once its original purpose has been served. Many children for years have used old cardboard boxes as play things, helping them imagine more things. Toilet paper rolls have also been used as binoculars. With the many uses of paper cardboard boxes and its small environmental impact, many savvy businessmen have opened a number of supply and recycling shops. Not only are they cheap, but also when you're done with them, you can even recycle them, giving you money and the peace of mind that you are doing your part in saving the environment.