Plastics for Change

About Solution

The PROBLEM

Plastics for change is using technology to reduce plastic pollution and create resilient livelihoods for the urban poor in developing countries. In most developing countries the informal sector is responsible for 80-90 percent of recycling activities. The traditional informal recycling supply chain in developing countries is a very exploitative system. The wastepickers at the base of the supply chain face numerous challenges when trying to access fair market prices for the discarded plastics they collect. Waste pickers have multiple barriers to formal employment so when they are unable to make a living from recycling there is often no other safety net to sustain their families. The platform serves as a tool for ensuring that urban waste pickers receive a fair price for the discarded plastics they collect.

The informal recycling economy is also highly dysfunctional with inefficient supply chains. Therefore it is difficult for the industry to source consistent supplies of high quality recycled plastic. Currently, 95% of the local manufacturers are sourcing purely virgin raw material. Our ethical sourcing platform helps manufacturers make a profitable transition away from virgin plastic.

The SOLUTION

Plastics for Change is leveraging technology to improve the quality standards for recycled plastic and creating sustainable livelihoods for the urban poor in developing countries. We have developed an ethical sourcing platform which provides a traceable supply chain solution. Our ISO certified scientific segregation process and mobile platform provides urban waste pickers with access to fair market prices.

Similar to fair trade agriculture, our platform creates transparency and accountability from the base of the supply chain to the store shelf. This results in more efficient shared-value chains and higher quality recycled plastic. We provide expertise to help catalyze brands and manufacturers to replace the use of virgin plastic with ethically sourced recycled plastic, thereby immediately improving the social and environmental impact of their products.

This initiative is about catalyzing the industry to transition away from virgin plastic while creating sustainable livelihoods for the urban poor. Since inception, we have created over 2000 jobs for waste-pickers and provide them consistent income.

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