Sci-Fi novelists have often theorized that by now we would be living in a digital dystopia consumed by the technology that was supposed to have helped us. But in 2021, instead, this dystopia contains oceans and land– even our bodies–full of plastic.
This useful material allowed us to make cheap, durable, convenient and “disposable” products that are now choking the planet.
The people are demanding change. Countries are pledging to eliminate all single-use plastics.
But the reality is that innovation and change needs to come from the top-down, from governments and the private sector to truly mitigate our addiction to and reliance on plastics.
Canadian company Greenlid was founded by CEO Morgan Wyatt and his brother, Jackson. The brothers first garnered attention with their 2018 Dragon’s Den appearance pitching their Greenlid prototype—a fully compostable alternative to the indoor compost bins provided by municipalities. The standard-issue plastic bins that require cleaning, bag inserts, and which have become an inadequate waste diversion project and an annoyance for foodservice workers.
The original Greenlid product paved the way to a business that today is revolutionizing packaging, utensils, containers and composting materials for foodservice businesses across the country.
Morgan Wyatt says the idea came to him when the government began collecting organic waste. He was already concerned about the rhetoric and the supposed objectives of organic waste collection and recycling programs. He believed there must be a better way. With a Ph.D. in chemical biology, Wyatt set out to make compostable bins.
Greenlid was born by imagining real solutions to difficult questions.
Says Wyatt: there are many companies, some larger than Greenlid, throwing their hats into the sustainability ring. What separates Greenlid from the rest? The answer to that question can be found in the term “greenwashing.” Greenwashing is disinformation disseminated by an organization to create a public image that is not necessarily rooted in honesty or transparency about the environmental responsibility of their products, operations or services.
Whether it’s car companies cheating on emissions tests or fast food restaurants promoting “fully recyclable” when little to nothing of their products is realistically recyclable at the municipal level, Wyatt has no qualms about breaking down the illusions of environmentalism that have led us all to believe we’re doing more than we really are to act sustainably.
Wyatt cares about the entire life cycle of products: what they’re made from, and how they’re made, from conception to where they end up.
Since their appearance on Dragon’s Den Greenlid has expanded to offering full-service solutions for restaurants or retail stores as well as custom products, including foodservice items, molded fibre trays and containers. At present, Greenlid supplies private label products to over 10,000 stores.
Wyatt has strong opinions about recycling. He believes that government recycling programs have wrongly shifted the bulk of the responsibility to the consumer. Wyatt thinks that corporate responsibility and better policies around building a truly circular economy in Canada are the answers to real sustainability. Gone are the days, says Wyatt, where producers make all the profit and municipalities and consumers are left drowning in unmanageable waste streams.
Wyatt says that at Greenlid he hopes they contribute to a healthier marketplace for eco-conscious and justice-oriented companies across the country and even the globe.
Interested in “going green?” For more information, please visit https://www.mygreenlid.com/go-green.