How do I dispose of a milk carton?

The tranquil days of milk bottles and direct delivery and collection from the doorstep are largely history. As early as 1943, the chemist Erik Wallenberg developed a packaging consisting of cardboard and a plastic coating that was ideal for transporting and storing milk.

The materials used have changed only slightly over the years. The milk carton used at NordseeMilch is made of 75% cardboard and has an outer and inner LDPE (low-density polyethylene) coating. The certified cardboard is sourced from sustainable, renewable sources. LDPE is very soft and temperature resistant.

The most important thing, however, is that LDPE is physiologically harmless and does not release any substances that can be metabolised in the human body. This combination of materials ensures that the milk is impermeable to oxygen and light, keeping it fresh for longer. The screw cap and the associated practical aspect of resealability have played a large part in the success of today's milk packaging. The lid is made of a mixture of HDPE (high density polyethylene) and LDPE.


for the environment

The most important facts about the "T-Cap:

According to the requirement of the Single-Use Plastics Directive (EU Directive 2019/904), from mid-2024 the caps must be firmly bonded to the body of the packaging.

  • The aim is to recycle the caps together with the containers and avoid littering the environment with discarded caps. 
  • NordseeMilch has decided to follow this requirement well ahead of the deadline in 2 years. As one of the innovation leaders in the German dairy industry, we want to show our colors and underline our consistent focus on maximum sustainability in product and packaging by converting our TierwohlMilch.
  • The new lid remains reliably connected to the packaging and guarantees the best possible recycling of our packaging. This saves recyclable materials and protects the climate.
  • Less plastic is used, which saves valuable resources.

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Pioneer from the far north

The Witzwort-based cooperative dairy NordseeMilch eG is the first dairy in Germany to offer beverage cartons with permanently bonded caps. From July 2022, the company's TierwohlMilch will be launched on the market with the new lids. With this early changeover, the dairy, which currently employs around 110 people at its Witzwort site, is underlining its consistent focus on maximum sustainability in both product and packaging. In accordance with the requirement of the Single-Use Plastics Directive (EU Directive 2019/904), permanently bonded caps will become mandatory for all beverage cartons and other single-use beverage packaging from mid-2024 in order to ensure the recycling of all packaging and promote environmental protection.

NordseeMilch T-Cap


Wie entsorge ich eine Milchverpackung richtig?

Dispose of milk packaging correctly? Here's how!

Dispose of milk packaging correctly? The milk packaging can be folded up in a few easy steps to save space. Simply open the screw cap briefly, press the package inwards on the left and right and then press the entire package together flat. Then fold the bottom forward and close the screw cap again. It is disposed of together with the milk carton in the yellow bin or the yellow bag, not in the paper bin or in the residual waste.

Under this link you will find a video that explains the cycle "collecting, sorting, recycling" in an illustrative way.

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Recycling bin as a basis for recycling

A milk carton must be disposed of via the yellow recycling bin or the yellow bag. In addition, it is of course also possible to hand them in at local recycling centres. Since 1991, used beverage cartons have been recycled in Germany and returned to the materials cycle.