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[GreenYes] Re: A green way to make green stuff and save the world - Win-win!



I'm curious about how Terracycle is defining the "garbage" they are
feeding their worms. Is it MSW, or source separated organics?
Laurie Stoerkel
Emeryville, CA

Nancy Meyer wrote:
> All,
>
> If you missed the CNN In The Money segment on Terracycle Inc last
> weekend, below is a transcript. This company makes a product from
> garbage and packages it in garbage - wonderful!
>
> I am a member of their bottle brigade simply by placing the free
> collection boxes they send in the break room at the elementary school.
> When the box is full of plastic bottles I send it postage-paid back to
> Freecycle, and they keep me posted on how many acres of rain forest our
> school has saved. You can also make money for your school or favorite
> charity with this program.
>
> Check it out! http://www.terracycle.net
>
> BTW, their fertilizer products are available in home improvement stores
> nationwide, including Home Depot.
>
> Why not get a collection box and place it at your school or business?
> It's easy, it's free, and it's the right thing to do.
>
> NMeyer
>
> ++++++++++++++++++++++
> ALLAN CHERNOFF, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): For Tom Szaky, landfills
> are lands of wasted opportunity.
>
> TOM SZAKY, FOUNDER & CEO, TERRACYCLE: Garbage is all opportunity.
> Garbage is great, because it's stuff that you can do something with.
>
> CHERNOFF: At age 24, he's the founder and CEO of Terracycle, a company
> that makes organic plant fertilizer entirely from trash. His product is
> made by feeding garbage to millions of worms. The worm's castings, or
> feces, which are a natural, powerful fertilizer, are then filtered and
> liquefied.
>
> SZAKY: Brewing worm poo.
>
> CHERNOFF: The final product is completely organic and costs less than
> many chemical-based competitors.
>
> The idea to mass produce the stuff came to Szaky at age 20 while he was
> a student at Princeton University. Szaky and his best friend turned
> business partner, John Vier (ph), drew up a business plan, forked over
> their savings, maxed out credit cards, even borrowed their friends' bar
> mitzvah money to get the company off the ground. SZAKY: Being 20 and
> having a worm poop start-up, we still had no success raising any money
> from any venture capitalist or anything like that.
>
> CHERNOFF: Strapped for cash, Szaky and Vier needed a cheap packaging
> solution.
>
> SZAKY: Solutions at Terracycle have always come out of necessity.
>
> CHERNOFF: The answer, package garbage in garbage. Terracycle bottles are
> reused soda bottles, many actually collected by school children and
> organizations all over the country. The spray tops are leftovers from
> other companies. And the shipping boxes, other corporations' misprints.
>
> In the two years that followed, Terracycle raised over $4 million from
> private investors. And the plant food can now be found in the world's
> largest retailer retailers, like Wal-Mart, Home Depot and CVS.
>
> The company has recruited a team of experts. Many have more years of
> industry experience than Szaky has had on the planet.
>
> SZAKY: Everyone here knows more than I do about what they do. And I'm
> more here just to challenge them and think differently.
>
> CHERNOFF: And his youthful creativity permeates the whole office, from
> the graffiti on the walls to the ex-dorm room furniture that, you
> guessed it, was once garbage.
>
> Szaky hopes his eco-friendly business model can set an example for other
> companies. But it's not all sunshine and chlorophyll. Szaky admits
> there's still room to grow. Purchasing more machines could seriously
> speed up production.
>
> SZAKY: I can't wait for the day we get our auto-tightening (ph) machine
> for these tights.
>
> UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Please.
>
> SZAKY: It will save some blisters.
>
> CHERNOFF: Terracycle has yet to make a profit but expects to break even
> by next year, with projected sales estimated at about $5 million.
>
> As for the company's future...
>
> SZAKY: The goal for Terracycle is to make $100 million business that's
> based on ecocapitalism, where you can make lots of money and save the
> world at the same time. And to do it in a really big way.
>
> CHERNOFF: A pretty lofty goal, but if you buy into a business model
> where trash is opportunity, the sources for success are practically
> limitless.
>
> Allan Chernoff, CNN.


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