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    Colombia: Profitably Recycling


    © International Trade Centre, International Trade Forum - Issue 2/2001

    Waste generated in houses, apartments and other dwellings is placed in doorways for collection by garbage trucks. Before the truck arrives, however, the garbage has normally been picked over for valuable material by private "rag-pickers" searching for items they can use or sell.

    In some towns, there are groups that specialize in collecting certain types of used packaging, for example, glass bottles, flexible plastics or packaging materials such as polystyrene foam and polyethylene. These operators provide an excellent grass-roots example of how wastes can be separated at source and profitably recycled within developing countries.