Table showing the equivalence of subsidies for recycling various materials like PET, aluminum, paper/carton, and HDPE2, in Spanish.

SEMA’s Trash-to-Treasure: Get Food for Recycling

The Secretary of Ecology and Environment (SEMA) is launching a new initiative called "Recycle for your Future". The program, which runs from June 3 to December 10 this year, aims to provide food in exchange for recyclable waste. The operational guidelines for this initiative were recently published in the Official Gazette of the State of Quintana Roo.

The program will be implemented in six municipalities: Benito Juárez, Puerto Morelos, the continental zone of Isla Mujeres, Tulum, Solidaridad, and Othón P. Blanco. The goal is to collect 450,000 kilograms of recyclable materials. These include Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET), High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE), aluminum cans, paper (such as magazines, files, and newspapers), and cardboard (like boxes and packaging).

The initiative aims to benefit up to 15,000 people. Participants will receive 400 to 450 pesos per month through an electronic system in exchange for their recyclable waste. To join the program, interested individuals must register through an income letter, which will soon be available at

This initiative is reminiscent of a similar program implemented from 2013 to 2016. In that program, participants could exchange recyclable materials like PET, cardboard, glass, and aluminum for "Beto Bonds". These could be used at the "Well-being Market" to purchase food.

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