Pikitup Johannesburg is adamant that waste pickers will not be affected by the City's waste separation at source programme.
The recycling initiative, which became mandatory on July 1, requires residents to put recyclable materials in provided plastic bags, which separate plastic, glass, paper, cardboard and metal.
"Pikitup has been in communication with waste pickers' representatives and a task team has been formed, but parties realise that there is so much recyclable material to be derived. Therefore, there is more than enough for all stakeholders," Pikitup's Muzi Mkhwanazi told News24.
Mkhwanazi added that the initiative made it easy for recyclers because they would receive waste which already have been separated and put in plastic bags outside residents' houses.
"Waste pickers will be able to take what they want and Pikitup will take the rest. Therefore, waste pickers will be able to also sustain their livelihoods," he said.
Mkhwanazi said challenges in the past were that the recyclable yield recovered was low. He added that only 4.5kg of recyclable materials was received as opposed to the expected 13kg.
"The low yield received as a result was the driving force behind making separation at source mandatory in the affected area," he said.
Mkhwanazi said the programme has been in operation since 2009 but that making it mandatory was a continuation.
He said residents in more than 300 selected areas would continue to receive plastic bags for recycling purposes.