In Salt Lake City, as well as the rest of the country, everyone knows that pizza boxes are recyclable, right? You toss it out with the rest of the refuse in your blue bin and forget it. They’re made of cardboard, after all. Heck, you can even somewhat break them down on your own. So what’s the problem? Well you’re right, it’s not the box that is the problem, it’s what goes into that box. Pizza, arguably America’s favorite dinner choice, is the reason its boxes might not make the cut when it comes to recycling.

Kimberly Nelson from Good 4 Utah was sent to find out more about this topic. The Director of Business for Rocky Mountain Recycling, Larry Gibbons, was able to explain why pizza boxes sometimes don’t end up being recycled. The answer is surprisingly simple. If there is any left-over food in the box it won’t make the cut at the recycling facility, unfortunately. Now don’t worry, there is an easy solution for the customer. Either you eat the whole pizza, or at least get what’s left when you’re finished out of the box. The only problem is, the grease can cause issues too when it comes to recycling. If there is an excess amount of grease in the box, it’s a no-go at the recycling facility.

We know you can’t control how greasy your pizza is, but we’d like to at least make our readers aware that leaving food in the box could be condemning it to the landfill. The next time you get a pizza for dinner, save or toss the rest. Don’t leave your left-over food in the box and end let it ruin that cardboard pizza box’s chances of being recycled. It may seem like a small task, but you’ll help the environment by removing the left-overs from your box the next time you order a pizza.

Source: Good 4 Utah