In a world where oceans and forests are crowded with waste and rubbish all over, where endangered animals die in alarming numbers every year because of plastic pieces and bits they inhale or eat, where whales, tortoises, fish, dolphins and so on swim between human trash, the best and biggest business idea will be in recycling. Not only it can be very rewarding moneywise, but you also have the great purpose of saving the wildlife and you will have a big effect on the planet in general. There are various fields in recycling that you can consider when starting your business in this area, but the important thing is that, whatever you do, one way or another, you clean up humans’ mess. However, recycling is tricky, because if the material is contaminated there’s nothing much that you can do with it. But, at the end of the day, every recycled plastic bottle or bag counts, because it decreases the amount of all the waste that people produce every day. Plus, it’s a legal obligation that every country on this planet has. Still, some of them are far behind reaching their target and that is because of the lack of education in this area, the lack of companies that are specialised in it or even both.

In general, starting a business in recycling is the same as beginning a new company in any field, but specifically you have a lot to consider and it’s a pretty big step if you think about it. It’s something that matters to you, but also something that matters to all living beings on Earth and Mother Nature will thank you for that.

Reasons you may need

If you need details and reasons to make up your mind there are plenty. Maybe you’re wondering if it’s going to make any difference and if it’s worth all the trouble. Maybe you wonder if it’s profitable enough to cover your investments and expenses in time, but also to make a decent living. Maybe you’re asking yourself where to start and what’s the more important and urgent problem to solve. The truth is there is no right answer when it comes to what to choose, however, it’s important to do some research in your area to see what clients you may have and what they’re interested in.

These kinds of companies are very profitable, because the amount of work they have to do is big and the prime materials are cheap. Afterall, it’s stuff that people don’t need and throw away. Of course, you have to invest a lot of money at the beginning in all the top machinery you need to be leading the way in recycling, plus you should consider where you place the actual building, because it should be somewhere outside the city, even though it may be a bit inconvenient. Don’t worry though, there are a lot of solutions concerning finances that we are going to mention in this article.

What many people in this industry don’t say is that the tricky issue concerns the fact that not everything can be recycled. Actually, the amount of materials that can be processed is very low due to the fact that the majority is contaminated with food or other kinds of trash. Moreover, there are different subsections of materials (like plastics may have different melting temperatures and metal as well) and you may need to hire somebody to sort them by hand.

How to choose a niche

The subject of recycling may sound like an easy one, but it is actually very vast. Before you start your business in this filed, you should choose a niche, because there is a lot to do and it would be too much to start with everything (if you’re thinking to cover the whole subject at some point).

First of all, you should do some research and see what fits in your area, what potential customers you will have and what are the prices on the market. If you choose something without considering these aspects you may find yourself in a big disadvantage, because if around your place there are clients that are interested in plastic and you choose to recycle paper, the costs of transporting it to an area where people are interested in it may be higher than you’d afford and you may be forced to close your business because of the low profits. Afterall, you have to cover the expenses of starting your business, pay your employees and loans and live off of it.

So, there are a few areas of expertise in this field, which are: building materials, used clothes, plastic, metal, paper and cardboard, pallets, e-waste and other junk. You can specialise on any of these, depending on the interests in your location.

How to start

After doing your research in every area (materials, customers, prices, competitors and so on) and choosing your niche, all you have to do is start the actual business.

First of all, you have to mind the finances as well as choosing the structure of your business. The start up of these kinds of companies is pretty expensive, taking into consideration the amount of money you have to invest in a proper building, machines and other devices and technology, employees and so on. You can apply for governmental funds or from other programmes, you can apply for a loan or an investment company. Depending on your niche you have to choose a business structure that fits the needs of your company and then register its name. You should also consider the fact that your business may be seasonal (usually it’s slower during winter and busier during summer). Then check all the legal implications like what licenses and permits you need, because it’s important to have your company respect the law.

The most important thing after you’ve finished with all the paperwork and started is marketing, like in any other business. So, make sure you are on the right track with publicity and you make your company well known in your community and why not on a national level. As a campaign you can also inform people on the importance or recycling and saving the planet.