A beautiful thing about owning your own business is that you get to build the company of your dreams. Everything you wished for in a product or a company, you can make it all happen. The recipes are the first manifestation of this notion. I created products in flavors I dream about, including some of my favorite adaptogens and ingredients to promote excellent nutrition while keeping the sugar low. I designed the packaging as an ode to my time living in Australia—it’s bright, playful and cheeky, and like the product itself, it’s sure to brighten up any breakfast setting! 

As a small business with a wild vision for the company, I believe our values of good vibes, uncompromised nutrition and bettering our planet are at our core. Action begins now, not when we’re big and have a lot of money. I was told by many seasoned food entrepreneurs and investors to NOT go far down the rabbit hole researching sustainable packaging—this is something Lil Bucks can look into when we’re bigger. I could not resist this important rabbit hole and learned everything I could about compostable technology, from measuring water vapor and oxygen transmission rates to performing at-home shelf life tests, and learning about printing capabilities to compostable economics. Ultimately, a survey with my customers provoked my decision. The survey showed that nearly 100% of our fans were interested in composting, but less than 10% were actually composting. With compostable technology to protect our sprouted buckwheat and economics not up to speed, it did not make sense to invest in compostable packaging yet. We need to educate our customers on composting, first, and continue to monitor compostable innovations in the next couple years!

So I started looking at recyclable packaging as the majority of recyclable products are more likely to end up getting reused at this point. After a year of research and more conversations than I would admit to industry professionals who told me not to focus on this (and are probably reading this now… hi!), WE FOUND A RECYCLABLE SUPPLIER! We will unveil these pouches in the second half of 2020. 

I’m so thrilled, but recycling is also a huge problem in the U.S.A.—it’s honestly very confusing due to the localized nature of recycling programs, and lack of education across the country on how to recycle (how many of you scrub your peanut butter jar before tossing?!). If we do recyclable, we MUST educate to ensure our bags get reused, so stay tuned for more education on that as we prepare our recyclable pouches. 

BUT IT’S STILL PLASTIC…

Even with this awesome step towards more sustainable packaging, I am still bothered by our plastic use, but we found it was really the best way (for now) to protect our food products without spending six figures to get a recyclable cereal box and compostable internal bag (the best option we found). I decided I would instill a “plastic tax” on the business until we stopped using plastic, and was in the midst of researching the best company to donate our plastic tax to offset our use. 

ENTER: REPURPOSE GLOBAL!

Amidst the craziness of covid-19, we missed out on meeting a company doing something amazing: rePurpose Global. This company measures the impact of consumer and business plastic use, collects the cost to offset this plastic use by funding sustainable waste management projects in developing countries. It is especially important to help sustainable, ethical waste management companies in developing counties. They face an even larger waste management challenge than a developed nation like the U.S., since trash from developed countries has been landing in developing countries for years, where there is not a formal industry to properly sort and recycle.

Even though we could not meet in person, I continued to learn more from rePurpose and how Lil Bucks could partner with them to offset our plastic use and align with a waste project in a developing country. I am proud to announce our Plastic Neutral Certification, achieved through our partnership with rePurpose Global. We have partnered with rePurpose to remove as much plastic from the environment as we put into it. Given the uncertainly of the virus, it may seem like a weird time to instill an extra cost on our business, but to me a cost to offset our environmental impact is THE cost of doing business. Stay tuned to learn more on our specific project, FAQ’s and recycling tips. HAPPY EARTH DAY!

 

P.S. – for just $2-4 / month on average, you can go plastic neutral too! Calculate your plastic footprint and learn more at rePurpose.global.

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