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The History of Pizza Boxes

In the 1940s, most pizza places offered take-out options. They would place the pizza on a stiff, corrugated base and slide the whole thing into a large paper bag for the customer to pick up. While this solution worked passably for individual take-out orders, it did not work for delivery, since it didn’t allow multiple pizzas to be stacked or transported easily. In the early 1960s, the corrugated pizza box was developed. The invention is widely credited to Tom Monaghan’s pizza empire, Domino’s, but many other inventors were working on the same issue at the same time, so it’s difficult to say definitively who invented the pizza box. Eventually, a little plastic tripod table was added to the center of the box to keep the cardboard from touching the cheese, but this has been phased out in recent years. Since its invention in the 1960s, there have been a number of improvements to the design of the pizza box, including different venting configurations and updates to make recycling easier. Some even come with holders for sauces or can be refolded into plates! However, the basic design remains the same and today's pizzerias continue to rely on this mid-century technology to transport their pies.

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