Case Study: “Garbage King” – Waste Recovery Station


Job hunting poses a huge challenge for fresh graduates for it seems that college graduates have outnumbered the jobs in the market. Confronted with such a situation, a small number of Chinese college students turned to another alternative — starting their own business. The renewable resource recovery industry, though it is equal with traditional waste collection in the eyes of most people, in fact is in urgent need of talents with theoretical and technical know-how. 

Why is it green and sustainable? 

Wu Mingxuan, Lv Mingjiang and Wang Yu introduced a fair collaboration system for waste collectors where the purchasing station takes over the reimbursement. The waste collectors are registered as official cooperation partners and are provided with support for facilities like resting areas, tricycle repairs, making their hard work easier. They also offer training to the waste collectors for proper waste handling and occupational safety and health. They also guarantee fair and exact payment for the waste delivered. Their services help to keep the communities clean and provide valuable resources for recycling and upcycling activities reducing exploitation of natural resources. 

Lessons learnt 

These college graduates have encountered unknown difficulties in starting their own business. But it is a comfort to see that the business is growing much faster than we expected. In many large and medium-sized cities, hundreds of tones of waste are generated every day; and the renewable resources wasted per year are worth hundreds of millions of yuan. In this sense, this industry is of huge potential and as it has little competition, small investment and low risks, it is a good career choice for college graduates. 

Source: ILO – International Labour Organization