Business · January 21, 2023

How To Start A Recycling Business

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This article was co-authored by Madison Boehm. Madison Boehm is a business advisor and the co-founder of Jaxson Maximus, a men’s salon and custom tailoring based in South Florida. She specializes in business development, operations and finance. In addition, she has experience in the salon, clothing and retail sectors. Madison holds a BBA in Entrepreneurship and Marketing from the University of Houston.

How To Start A Recycling Business

How To Start A Recycling Business

There are 16 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.

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A successful recycling business is one that allows you to make a profit while helping the environment. However, this is a big business, and you will face some serious competition. By making a detailed plan, including financing, understanding the legal requirements and using good business sense, you can get your recycling business off the ground.

This article was co-authored by Madison Boehm. Madison Boehm is a business advisor and the co-founder of Jaxson Maximus, a men’s salon and custom tailoring based in South Florida. She specializes in business development, operations and finance. In addition, she has experience in the salon, clothing and retail sectors. Madison holds a BBA in Entrepreneurship and Marketing from the University of Houston. This article has been viewed 409,509 times.

To start a recycling business, start by finding out what materials are already being recycled in your local area. For example, if your town already collects paper and glass, you might want to start a business that recycles large wooden furniture or broken electronics. Also find out where you can sell the materials you want to recycle, and how much you can make from them, to make sure your business can be profitable. Then determine how much money you need to start your business so you can start looking for loans or investors. For more information, including how to take the appropriate legal steps to start your business, keep reading! Circular economies—economies designed to be regenerative—are growing in popularity, which is probably why you want to start a recycling business. Smart.

Plastic Recycling And The Plastic Recycling Process

The recycling industry is an important factor in driving this change. As more entrepreneurs consider recycling as a viable business option, it is important to understand what makes recycling companies successful.

Before you start planning your recycling business, you need to choose a niche – or a type of stuff – that you want to recycle. (You can’t choose them all.) Why? The short answer is: it will be too expensive. Different recyclable materials require different methods of collection, sorting and processing, and the recycling industry is heavily regulated by both federal and local governments. Trying to process and adhere to regulations for multiple niches would be prohibitive.

An estimated 95% of 18- to 49-year-olds owned a smartphone in 2021. Cell phones are a growing source of waste in landfills. Cell phone recycling can be profitable for you and better for the environment.

How To Start A Recycling Business

Loosely refers to business and consumer electronic equipment that is no longer functional. Recycling programs that handle e-waste handle everything from computer monitors to microwave ovens.

Challenges In Recycling

As recycling centers evolve to be able to process more of the sheer abundance of discarded electronics, this niche will continue to grow. From 2010 to 2019 alone, global production of e-waste nearly doubled, growing from 33.8 to 53.6 million metric tons.

Aluminum is light, durable and used in many different ways, which is why aluminum is in high demand for consumer goods. Aluminum is also very abundant. However, it takes an inordinate amount of work and energy to refine and produce new aluminum for manufacturing.

Therefore, despite its availability, a recycling business that allows us to reuse aluminum instead is beneficial to manufacturers (and to recycling business owners).

In the recycling market, appliance recycling generally refers to large-scale household appliances such as washing machines, refrigerators and stoves.

All You Need To Know About Starting A Recycling Company For Plastics Waste

As living standards and per capita incomes continue to rise worldwide, appliances will provide a growing source of recyclable materials. In fact, the global device recycling market will be worth nearly $850 million by 2025.

As part of the surge in environmentalism and Earth-first thinking in the 70s, consumers learned that most plastics are not biodegradable. Although recycling culture has blossomed around efforts to limit plastic use, market demand remains high due to plastic’s low production costs, durability and versatility.

In 2018, plastic alone accounted for nearly 20% of landfill waste. This means plastic recycling is growing as a business opportunity, especially as current processing methods make it much easier to reuse. Global Industry Analysts, Inc. predicts that the plastic recycling market will reach $47.3 billion by 2026.

How To Start A Recycling Business

Once you have a sense of which niche suits you best, the process of starting your recycling business can begin.

How Good & Profitable Is Recycling Business Idea? Business Plan & More

Although it doesn’t sound super exciting, business plans are secret weapons in the small business world. Because a business plan acts as your north star, it will help you stay on track as your business gets off the ground. While any type of business plan should work for you, there are basic principles that any plan for a recycling business should cover. This includes:

An important aspect of creating your business plan should also include how you will cover business costs. Again, depending on your niche, these costs will vary. Common costs for a recycling business typically include:

Once your business plan is complete, you will know how much funding you need to get to start your business. The next step?

A truism in business is that it takes money to make money. A recycling business is no exception (ie you have to find green to go green). One benefit that other industries may not benefit from is the growing support for entrepreneurs who contribute to circular economies.

Lithium Ion Battery Recycling Detailed Project Report On How To Start Battery Recycling Business

Take advantage of websites like by searching for terms like “recycling” and review what opportunities are currently available. Other levels of government are also worth exploring (especially with the help of sites like the Database of State Incentives for Renewable Energy and Efficiency).

But don’t limit your thinking to grants alone. Other forms of financial assistance for recycling startups can include private funding, low-interest loans and tax incentives.

When starting out, one of your first big decisions will involve whether to buy your initial equipment or lease/rent it. Based on your niche and business plan, it may seem like you’ll start processing enough recyclables to justify purchasing waste management equipment.

How To Start A Recycling Business

However, remember that the cost of the equipment itself is only a fraction of the total cost to you, the business owner. When you buy, you will also be responsible for maintenance, repairs and the salaries of the people who operate it. As a new recycling business owner, it is often difficult to know how much of what type of equipment you need.

Will Plastics Recycling Meet Its Deadline?

For these reasons, leasing may be the smartest move for most owners as their business gets off the ground.

During the planning process, it is also important to identify what specific role you will need to fulfill when starting your recycling business. For example, recycling centers often employ a combination of drivers, sorters, mechanics/technicians, facility managers, recycling coordinators, route managers, and sales representatives.

Also, certain technologies such as route optimization software have experienced growth in both demand and performance in recent years. This means transportation-based business owners (both new and existing) are wise to strike a balance between hiring the right employees vs. investment in technology to meet their operational requirements.

For some recycling niches, a majority of your business may involve sending drivers on predetermined routes. For electronics and aluminum-focused businesses, offering mobile pickups will appeal to potential customers who need recycling services less often, but who do end up with large amounts of recyclables.

Trash & Recycling

These potentially profitable opportunities are difficult to plan for as a business owner. By offering mobile pickup, you’ll ensure your business takes advantage of these “one-off” opportunities when they present themselves. Don’t forget – by making your mobile pickup service seamless and efficient, you can impress future customers.

The potential benefits of mobile pickup also highlight why you should market your recycling business. Unlike you and your competition, customers don’t think about recycling 24/7. When they do need something that is recycled, marketing helps ensure that the name of your business is the best.

Fortunately, marketing doesn’t have to be complicated. Above all, avoid the temptation to pour money into a one-size-fits-all approach. Just like a business plan, taking the time to plan who you’re marketing to and how best to do it will pay off in the long run.

How To Start A Recycling Business

As part of your marketing planning, be sure to depict everything you know about your main customers in clear customer profiles. Effective customer profiles give you an idea of ​​which marketing channels your customers are looking at when they need your services. Then, by focusing on these specific channels, you continue to invest your marketing budget in the places where your customers are.

How To Start A Plastic Recycling Business

Studies estimate there are 5 trillion pieces of plastic floating in our oceans. Discarded fishing nets are one of the most dangerous products that contribute to this mess. So, Bureo has made it their business to work with local communities and fisheries to help collect, clean and sort fishing nets. Bureo then processes these nets into the patented Netplus™ material.

This material is then sold for use by major clothing brands such as Patagonia, creating jobs for local workers and funding for community-based

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