Information for MRFs

You Invest in Cartons, Carton Council Invests in You

Food and beverage cartons are fiber-based packages that contain some of the highest quality fiber available in the recycling stream.

They can be recycled into paper products, such as tissues, paper towels and writing paper, or sustainable building materials, such as roofing cover board or wallboard.

Benefits Overview

Domestic and International End Markets Want Cartons

In 2011, the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) created Paper Stock Industries (PSI) Grade #52 exclusively for food and beverage cartons. While the Carton Council recommends cartons be sorted by themselves into Grade #52, they can also be sorted with other fiber-based materials into Mixed Paper, Grade #54.

The primary markets for Grade #52 cartons are recovered fiber mills and manufacturing facilities that produce sustainable building materials. There are end markets in North America as well as overseas that actively purchase food and beverage cartons. If you’re not already sorting cartons, the Carton Council can help you get started.


We offer grants for equipment like optical sorters, robots, bunkers and more. Contact us to identify the best solution for carton sorting at your facility. Education grants are also available.

Network of
End Markets

Carton Council works across the value chain and can connect you with end markets that purchase cartons. Learn more below.


By sorting and baling cartons as Grade #52, communities and facilities can maximize the highest value for cartons in end markets and contribute to the steady market demand.

Connecting with End Markets

Finding a Home for Sorted Cartons

If you are a MRF, there are recyclers, such as recovered fiber mills and manufacturing facilities, that buy Grade #52 food and beverage carton bales. End markets are located in North America as well as overseas, as is common with other commodities.

The Carton Council can connect you to a network of brokers to assist with the movement of cartons. This list is provided as a courtesy to assist facilities and programs to move post- consumer cartons.

Get in Touch For More Assistance


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  • Sustana Fiber in Wisconsin
  • Kelly Green Products in Connecticut
  • Sustana Fiber Levis in Quebec
  • Kimberly-Clark in Mexico