Plastic People was established in September 2021 by Morante, an Argentine, and Nestor Catalan, a Spaniard, motivated by their shared determination to address Vietnam’s plastic issue, which has been ranked as high as fourth globally according to certain estimates.

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, our company successfully repurposed 650 metric tons of plastic waste. This included various items like single-use cups, milk boxes, lunch boxes, and yogurt containers. Through our transformative process, these materials were converted into useful boards, all of which were sold on the market.

Nano Morante and his team at Plastic People carefully sort plastic at the factory. Photo: Quang Dinh / Tuoi Tre

Nano Morante and his team at Plastic People carefully sort plastics at their factory in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Quang Dinh / Tuoi Tre
Each of our standard 2400x1200x20 mm boards are crafted from approximately 55-60 kilograms of recycled plastic waste.

Plastic People, initially a modest venture with only two individuals and a $7,000 capital, harbors a profound aspiration to revolutionize our world. Recognizing the escalating menace posed by plastic waste, which engulfs Vietnamese soil, water bodies, and marine ecosystems, we strive relentlessly towards environmental restoration and sustainability.

“Currently, we have a total of 21 employees and our annual production stands at approximately 270 metric tons,” shared Morante. “However, we are aiming for a significant growth, planning to increase our production by a factor of eight, reaching a remarkable 2,000 metric tons annually by mid-2023.”

“The greater our waste production, the more opportunity to transform it into valuable plastic materials.”

Products from 100 percent recycled plastic waste made from products of Plastic People. Photo: Quang Dinh / Tuoi Tre

Products from 100 percent recycled plastic waste made by Plastic People. Photo: Quang Dinh / Tuoi Tre

The Plastic People factory is conveniently situated near prominent waste collectors in Thu Duc City.

The company offers payment to collectors at rates varying between VND5,000-8,000 (equivalent to 21-34 U.S. cents) per kilogram of plastic.

In addition to purchasing items from collectors, our company proudly boasts an extensive collection of plastic heroes and goodwill ambassadors.

In March and April, Thanh Vu, a Vietnamese athlete who won the Swiss Ultra Triathlon 2022, embarked on a 28-day bicycle journey spanning 28 provinces in Vietnam. The purpose of this journey was to raise awareness about the issue of plastic waste.

Thank you for visiting our page. We are pleased to inform you that Thanh Vu and her dedicated team have been actively collecting and organizing plastics from various locations. These plastics have then been sent to Plastic People, a renowned organization, in order to demonstrate to communities the significant impact their actions can have on fostering a thriving circular economic model.

Thanh Vu and her team have been raising awareness, collecting and sorting plastics in different locations. Collected plastics will be happily transformed by Plastic People into beautiful, safe and durable products. Photo: Plastic People’s facebook

Thanh Vu and her team have been raising awareness, collecting and sorting plastics in different locations. The collected plastics will be transformed by Plastic People into beautiful, safe, and durable products. Photo: Plastic People’s Facebook account

In Ho Chi Minh City, individuals including students, office workers, and environmental enthusiasts actively contribute to the efforts of Plastic People. They diligently collect and send their plastic waste to the organization on a daily basis. This commendable initiative is made possible through the dedicated work of Morante and his team.

To connect with Plastic People, simply reach out to them on Facebook. They are readily available to provide you with comprehensive guidelines on how to properly prepare and sort plastics. Rest assured, you can expect a prompt response within a few minutes.

We take pride in our ability to make a significant impact through even the smallest efforts. Allow us to accept your plastic waste and witness the transformation as we convert 100% of it into stunning, secure, and long-lasting products. The results will speak for themselves as we proudly embark on this sustainable journey.

“I believe that our initial objectives and current goals are undergoing an evolution.”

Our initial goal was to make a significant impact on the world. However, we soon realized that in order to bring about change, we must actively collaborate and build the world we envision together. It is truly inspiring to witness the engagement of our entire community in the collective effort to reduce plastic waste.

As Morante sat on the benches outside his factory, he pondered how his company could seamlessly integrate into Vietnam’s intricate waste collection and recycling system. The blistering sun of the hot summer day only intensified his contemplation.

“I have always found an ample supply of plastic materials. I actively engage with individuals and regularly visit the location,” Morante explained, gesturing towards the makeshift warehouse where waste collectors gather.

When our team engages with plastic collectors, we discuss our specific requirements and collaborate closely.

The counter of a coffee shop made from products of Plastic People. Photo: Plastic People’s facebook

The counter of a coffee shop made from Plastic People products in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Plastic People’s Facebook page

The Argentine man presents various samples to his providers in order to procure specific types of plastic for his factory. These samples include a wide range of items such as nylon bags, boxes, yogurt and food containers, plastic wrappers, bags for cookies, spaghetti, and chips, various forms of hard plastic, masks made from 100 percent polyester, containers for milk and fruit, and styrofoam boxes.

Plastic People stands out for its comprehensive plastic recycling services, accepting a wide range of plastic materials that are often turned away by other recyclers. Our distinctive ‘non-picky’ policy underscores our commitment to collaboration with the community.

Morante takes pride in his extensive network of informal waste collectors in Ho Chi Minh City. These dedicated individuals, known as garbage pickers, collaborate closely with Morante and his team to gather and sell every plastic item they find. In return, Morante ensures fair compensation for their efforts, fostering a mutually beneficial working relationship.

The company offers educational workshops and practical solutions to corporations, local businesses, manufacturers, schools, and the community, aimed at inspiring them to reduce their plastic consumption.

According to the Global Plastics Action Partnership, Vietnam generates approximately 3.7 million metric tons of plastic waste annually. It is projected that this figure will increase by 36 percent from 2018 to 2030.

Only approximately 10-15 percent of plastic waste in Vietnam is currently being collected for recycling.

The Plastic People team. Photo: Plastic People’s facebook

The Plastic People team. Photo: Plastic People’s Facebook account

Annually, Vietnam discharges an estimated 3.1 million metric tons of plastic waste on land.

According to reports, approximately 10 percent of the mismanaged waste in this Southeast Asian country ends up leaking into waterways, making it one of the leading contributors to plastic pollution in the world’s oceans.

According to the report titled ‘Vietnam: Plastic Pollution Diagnostics’, the volume of leakage is projected to increase by over two times by 2030 if no action is taken.

Types of Plastic Waste

Plastic waste is broadly classified into two types:

  • Single-use plastics: These are plastics that are designed for one-time use and are often thrown away after a single use. Examples include plastic bags, plastic cutlery, and plastic water bottles.
  • Durable plastics: These are plastics that are designed to last for a long time and are used for various purposes. Examples include plastic toys, plastic furniture, and plastic medical equipment.

One type of plastic waste is post-consumer, which refers to the waste created after a product or item has been used or consumed, such as plastic containers for fruits, yogurt, or beverages.

Another type of waste is industrial waste, which is produced by factories and often ends up in the environment.

The recycling of post-consumer waste poses significant challenges for companies as it requires the collection from individual households.

These items pose a greater challenge in terms of treatment, as they require thorough washing.

Morante’s company specializes in processing post-consumer plastic and sources all of its input materials from the streets and houses of Ho Chi Minh City.

Plastic People offers a diverse range of 32 high-quality products that are specifically designed for creating tables, chairs, and tiles. Our products are ideal for various environments, including residential homes, restaurants, offices, and hotels.

This product is made from 100% recycled plastic waste. We make sure to not include any chemicals, glue, binding agents, or color additives,” stated Morante.

This is an essential point to emphasize: currently, a product can be labeled as “recycled” with only 10 percent recycled plastic content. Nonetheless, we take pride in manufacturing products that are 100 percent recycled.

Plastic People is proud to announce that our range of products is now available for export to Europe, the United States, Australia, and South Africa. We are excited to bring our innovative plastic solutions to customers worldwide.

We have plans for expansion to various locations in Vietnam, including Hanoi and Hoi An.