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Plastic recycling, supporting waste pickers with higher incomes

The Problem

São Paulo, the biggest city in Brazil, generates 20,000 tons of waste on a daily basis. Yet only 5% of the residential buildings have public recycling collection service, the majority of it goes to landfill.

The Solution

Instituto Muda picks up recycled waste from high-income condos in São Paulo and donates it to waste recycling cooperatives. They directly generate 85 jobs and provide employment to low-income families, formerly homeless and former drug addicts at the cooperatives.

The Impact

100 tons of recyclable material is diverted from landfill on a monthly basis. The social business maintains 435 jobs with higher incomes.


“A charity dollar has one life -

a social business dollar can be invested over and over again”

Prof. Muhammad Yunus