Plastic is not biodegradable. It takes several decades for p...
Do you want to start plastic recycling business in India? Before going to this topic let us discuses the topic of Plastic in our daily life… Plastic is a lightweight and durable material. Plastic production started in 1950s and since then has replaced most of the metals and fabric used in packaging, automobiles and computers industry. Today, an average Indian uses 25 pounds (approximately) of plastic every year. Plastic consumption has been growing at the rate of 10% (CAGR) and is expected to have the same growth pattern for the next few years.
How does plastic harm the environment?
Plastic is not biodegradable. It takes several decades for plastic to degrade itself. None of us can practically stop using or disposing plastic. So all used plastic makes planet Earth its home till it perishes. Imagine the amount of plastic trashed in a day, month and year, and the number of years we will have to live with them until they vanish. Plastic left as trash has its own effect on environment and humanity. Plastic is causing global warming, land, water and air pollution. Burnt plastic is a dangerous threat as it releases toxic smoke that is unsafe for us to inhale.
Around 400 to 500 million tons of plastic is trashed every year. Of the total plastic produced, 10 to15% is recycled. Therefore, for the sake of our health and for a greater good of protecting nature, plastic must be handled very carefully. It must be used minimally and disposed properly. Minimizing the use of plastic is a gradual process and will take its own time but in the mean while efficient ways to manage plastic can be thought of. One of the efficient ways of handling plastic is to recycle it. A plastic recycling business involves reprocessing used plastic to make it reusable. Plastic recycling business has many lines of businesses like collecting plastic, outsourcing the reprocessing, selling the recycled plastic etc. Virgin plastic is costly when compared to recycled plastic. More the number of times plastic undergoes recycling, the lower its quality gets.
The lowest grade of such recycled plastic is used to make PET bottles, polythene, use and throw containers, boxes etc. Road laying departments also purchase low quality plastic to build roads. Molten plastic is used as tar. In India, water and shampoo bottles are the most recycled plastic items.
There are different types of plastics that we use. Plastic products are categorized majorly into six types. They are Polystyrene (foam hot drink cups, plastic cutlery, containers), Polypropylene (used to make lunch boxes, food containers, ice cream containers), LDPE (to make garbage bins and bags, PVC (juice or squeeze bottles), HDPE (shampoo containers or milk bottles), and PET (fruit juice and soft drink bottles).
Currently, only PET, HDPE, and PVC plastic products are recycled. Polysterene, Polypropylene, and LDPE are not recycled as get stuck in the sorting equipment of recycling facilities resulting in breakage. Lids and bottle tops can also not be recycled. Some plastic types are not recycled because they are not economically feasible to do so. Plastic bottle recycling business is one of the thriving businesses these days. Plastic bottles are used extensively for packing drinking water. Plastic bottle recycling business is relatively easy as collecting used bottles and sorting them is easy.
ü Collect the plastic waste and dump it in your location
ü Sort and separate the plastic waste like PVC, LDPE, etc.
ü Start grinding the waste
ü Compress and melt the grinded product
ü Filter the melted plastic
ü Form pellets
ü Cool the pellets
ü Pack them in bags
ü Sell the recycled product to plastic products manufacturers
The steps involved in starting a plastic recycling business are listed here:
1. Conduct a thorough Research
Find out if a plastic recycling company is required in your locality. Look for manufacturers who need and buy recycled plastic. Research to know the type of plastic having highest demand from the manufacturers and also the market price for it.
2. Craft a business Plan
Create a business plan. Most NGOs and social work volunteers will have information on how to get and how to find plastic for recycling.
3. Register the business
Register a business name. For business like recycling plastic, an NOC certificate from pollution board is necessary.
4. Gather the required money
Identify the sources of money required to hire a location, buy machinery and equipment, and paying operational costs.
5. Choose a location
Choose an industrial area. You will need labor to sort plastic so look for area that has good number of workers. A plastic recycling plant must have enough space to store the collected waste, sorting the waste and storing the recycled plastic.
6. Decide how to gather used plastic:-
Plastic can be gathered from residential areas, local volunteer groups or rag pickers. A constant source of supply to is required to run the business without interruption.
7. Buy the machinery and equipment:-
Search for the machines and equipment online, and take advice form the existing business owners. The machines required include shredders, crushers, extruders, washers and solar dryer.
8. Arrange for other utilities:-
Set up other utilities like electric connection, water supply, furniture, etc.
9. Promote your business:-
Promote your business to reach your potential clients. Advertise through posters, emails, events, social media etc.
Challenges in the Plastic Recycling Industry:-
The existence of mixed plastics, collection of good quality used plastic, impurities in plastic, uneconomical and inefficient recycling of mixed plastic, sorting, convincing big brands to use recycled plastic are some of the major challenges in the plastic recycling business.
How much money can you make from recycling plastic bottles?
Significant profits can be made after 3 to 4 months of starting the business. To increase your profit margins, maintain good terms with the plastic supplier and the reused plastic consumer. This ensures business throughout the year. You can go on by establishing your own production unit of polythene bags, single-use plastic articles etc. Connect with the plastic bottle recycling business owners to understand the operational challenges and for advice on mitigating the challenges.
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