THE BUSINESS OF USED PAINT BUCKETS
When you see a new empty 20-liter bucket of paint, what do you think is the worth? Let me save you the stress. In Onitsha, an empty plastic bucket of paint costs from N1,000.00 to N1,300.00. The size, color, and brand determine the cost of the buckets. White buckets are costlier than colored buckets. Paint Manufacturers brand the buckets and package their paints with them. They sell the products to the end-users. Most end users are only interested in the content. And after use, they either give it out to people or demand as low as N400 for the used buckets.
THE BUSINESS OF USED BUCKETS IN ONITSHA
There are two categories of people that buy used paint buckets in Onitsha. The first group uses it for domestic like food storage or other purposes like bathing and cleaning the house. The second group buys these buckets, washes them, scrapes out the brands on them, and resells them to paint producers.
They buy the bucket as low as N400 and – depending on the color, size, and brand – resell the bucket for N800 – N900! Some of these people that are in the business of used paint buckets have traded on this for over a decade.
Women dominate this paint reusable paint bucket business. They strategically find a space near paint factories where they wash and resell to producers. These women also encourage the producers to link them to new sites where they can buy used buckets in quantity.
Some of these female merchants have over 2,000 buckets. And as long as people are building and painting houses in Onitsha, the business of used buckets will continue to flourish.
This business, while it provides a means of earning to people, it also encourages the culture of controlling of plastic waste in society.