Starting a business recycling cans can be a profitable and fulfilling way of helping your community. Getting started in a can recycling business can be tricky, but by following the steps below, you can avoid some of the common pitfalls and be on your way to profitability.
Get licensed to run your business, if your state requires it. Contact your local chamber of commerce to find out what laws exist that you must follow to get started. Most states require that you register your business for tax purposes, and some may require additional paperwork for doing recycling work.
Determine who you will sell your cans to and make sure that they will be a stable purchaser. Some states have dedicated recycling centers that pay by the pound for cans, while in others you may need to find a private organization that fills this role. Make sure to check on the processing requirements for the organizations you find.
Locate a steady stream of cans that you can collect on a regular basis. Ask local businesses that sell beverages if you can place can-recycling bins in their stores. Offices are another location where much raw material may be available.
Obtain equipment. You will need to distribute can-recycling bins to any locations you were able to secure, and depending on processing requirements you may need to set up a location for processing and bundling your cans. Remember that you will probably need a large vehicle to transport the cans to their destination as well.
Keep looking for new opportunities for material. Once you have started collecting your cans and selling them, see if your existing customers can recommend new places for you to add more can-recycling bins and expand your business.