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Seniors aid the recycling trend

By Zheng Jinran | China Daily | Updated: 2017-02-10 08:07

After Ma Zhongyan used an app on her phone to arrange for waste paper and bottles to be collected, all she had to do was wait for the company's truck to arrive.

When the driver arrived and the waste had been weighed and loaded, it took less than a minute for him to transfer 5 yuan (72 cents) to Ma's online account.

Seniors aid the recycling trend
Apps such as Bangdaojia are becoming prime movers in China's recycling industry.Zou Hong / China Daily

"This door-to-door pickup service is so convenient that I have become more enthusiastic about storing the wrapping after I have unpacked parcels," said Ma, who lives in the Chao-yang district of Beijing.

The application she used was Bangdaojia, developed by Yingchuang Recycling Co in Beijing, which provides regular door-to-door recycling services for household waste, such as plastic bottles, cans, paper and old electrical appliances.

Unlike some of her 60-something peers, Ma is comfortable with mobile technology. She has been using Bangdoajia and other services regularly for many months as a result of the rising number of packages her children have bought online and the resultant waste wrapping materials.

"Recycling packaging is important because it protects the environment, and I want to set an example for my grandson," she said.

Wang Tingfu, the Bangdaojia driver who operates in Ma's district, has worked as a household waste collector for more than 10 years. In the past year, he has noticed a marked increase in the volume of discarded wrapping paper and boxes, especially after festivals and big events.

"After online shopping sprees like the one on Nov 11 (Singles Day), orders for collection soared, but many clients are in their 50s and 60s," said the 45-year-old, who earns about 5,000 yuan a month.

He believes that older people are at the forefront of waste collection and recycling because younger people are too busy and they prefer to throw their waste wrapping straight into the garbage can.

Bangdaojia has recently been joined by a number of newcomers in the promising sector. Data from the Ministry of Commerce show that in 2015, the top 10 types of items collected, such as paper, cans, and cardboard, were worth a combined 515 billion yuan.

Bangdaojia covers more than 400 communities in Beijing, employing more than 240 staff to collect waste materials. The company plans to expand its coverage in the capital and make greater efforts to explore the burgeoning market, according to Chang Tao, manager of Yingchuang Recycling, who said a stronger emphasis on environmental protection could boost the sector's growth.

Meng Zhe contributed to this story.


Seniors aid the recycling trend

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