Skip to Content


East Manchester Environment and Resources Group Emerge (EMERGE) began as a voluntary organisation in January 1996 and commenced multi-material kerbside collections from 50 homes in December, building the service up as more homes joined in week by week!
1st May EMERGE Recycling registered as a Company Limited by Guarantee. This means there are no private share holders, in essence EMERGE is a community business (a social enterprise); EMERGE is an 'open membership' organisation, open to all those who share our aims and objectives.

We gained our first fully paid member of staff, pioneered the first hi-rise flats recycling service in Manchester and piloted a Pedestrian Controlled Vehicle (PCV) multi-material collection service for 5,000 households. This was an innovative method of collecting from the doorstep. We also developed an Open College Network (OCN) qualification in Community Recycling, the first qualification of its kind in the 3Rs and recycling.

By now we were collecting paper fortnightly from over 30,000 homes. We provided recycling at events such as Manchester Mela and the Moss Side Carnival, each attended by over 5000 people.

EMERGE secured major support from the European Social Fund for all activities with a focus on training and developing a wider programme of ‘Community Recycling Champions’ in Manchester.

We secured domestic recycling contracts with Trafford Council (to collect multimaterials from 7,000 homes weekly within Old Trafford and Gorse Hill), and similarly, a major partnership arrangement with Manchester City Council to provide a multi-material kerbside collection service for 55,000 homes in North and Central Manchester, helping the city raise its recycling rate from 4% to 17%!

Using our expertise in domestic recycling services, we assisted Warrington Council with sucessful rollout of their recycling services to 80,000+ homes.

EMERGE began a major Schools Recycling Programme across Manchester borough, thanks to CRED lottery funding. Over 120 schools received a free recycling service with 'Real 3Rs' education workshops for participants focused on how to Reduce, Reuse and Recycle (the waste hierarchy).

2007- onwards
EMERGE developed and expanded its Business Services; by 2018 we are collecting from over 900 businesses in Manchester and the surrounding areas, with the additions of plastic bottle and plastic film collections, confidential documents, lightbulbs, batteries and IT equipment reuse and recycling to our long list of materials collected for recycling and reuse.

EMERGE partnered with FareShare UK in order to run the Greater Manchester 'regional centre' of this national charity, redistributing surplus in-date food to community groups, schools and voluntary sector bodies who use food to help alleviate poverty. By 2018 we redistribute nearly 1500 tonnes of food to 220 'Community Food Members' who are organisational beneficiaries.
EMERGE Recycling changes its name to EMERGE 3Rs and becomes a registered charity in order to support charitable activities like FareShare GMCR. We convert a dormant wholly owned subsidiary company into 'EMERGE Recycling' to continue doing commercial waste and recycling services for public and environmental good, as a social enterprise.
EMERGE is approached by the National Community Wood Recycling Project (NCWRP) to undertake commercial wood collections across GMCR and beyond. After a few months we also agree to establish a wood upcycling and reuse initiative as this forms part of the case for the construction industry to buy this service from us. Our 'Touch Wood' store and workshop is born!
EMERGE Recycling is now a fully ISO9001/BSEN15713 compliant specialist in confidential shredding. As a member of the BSIA (British Security Industry Assoc), all document shredding is assured to be handled in a secure, compliant and professional manner. As a not-for-personal-profit social enterprise our recycling enterprise helps to support FareShare Greater Manchester and Touch Wood.

Consulting and Waste Audit Services

With nearly 20 years of waste industry experience, we have considerable expertise and an ongoing passion and commitment for the 'real 3Rs' of waste reduction, reuse and recycling. After many consultancy projects we now only occasionally take on a project of special interest. Please contact Lucy to explore your requirements further, 0161 223 8200 via Option 2.