Cardboard recyclers are estimating that they are losing between $8 Million to $10 Million a year to theft of used cardboard in New York City.
Over 150,000 commercial establishments in the city have contracts with waste management companies that pick-up used cardboard from their stores. These cardboard boxes are broken down and sent to recyclers. Thieves are instead driving rented trucks around the city and stealing the stacks of cardboard boxes and recycling it themselves.
An official with the waste management lobby stated that a thief could fill up a truck with one and a half tons of cardboard and make $150 for the haul.
Source: John Metcalfe, “Inside the Surprisingly Lucrative World of Cardboard Theft,” The Atlantic Cities, July 31, 2012.