Archive for Business

Winnipeg Recycler Hailed as a “Rock Star”

The Star reported a short story about a man in Winnipeg who sent 41,767 cigarette butts to a company to recycle. In turn they have called him a hero. A nice, inspirational story to remind us all that there are good people out there making a difference and we could be one of them – assuming we are willing to go that EXTRA mile.

The cool thing I took away from this article was the company itself and what they are doing! TerraCycle takes previously un-recyclable or hard to recycle items, like the dreaded coffee pods and snack pouches, and recycles them into useable goods. They run various programs, called Brigades, and you can check them out online, collect your waste, order a shipping label from them and then post your waste – Voilà!

Take a couple of minutes and check out their site and then tell a friend! They are a great example of next step thinking – some municipalities are still struggling to offer standard recycling, TerraCycle brings recycling to the door of those who want and can do it!


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Refillable: Business is Booming in Vancouver

Reduce, reuse, recycle and REFILL! The refill phenomenon is taking Vancouver, and other major cities, by storm. From cleaning products, to personal care and even beer, shops all over the city are popping up to refill your containers.

The idea of reducing waste by creating refillable packages is not new. Method is a line of personal and household cleaning products sold in various major retail stores. They offer dispensers that are intended to be refilled with Methods refill products, which are sold in larger quantities and in reduced packing. Not everything they sell is refillable and not every store offers it. I know you can get your salon products refilled at some hair salons, but that is more about product type, not recycling. The fact is, until now, refillable was a nice thought, but offered little selection and still required packaging, and shipping to a store near you.

These new refill stores are offering an incredible selection of personal and household products, too many to list. Often made locally and/or in Canada, the products are generally cleaner, greener and safer. By requiring you to bring your own bottles, they are dramatically reducing the plastic waste that ends up in landfills or floating at sea.

While soap and shampoo refills are awesome, I have to say that the increased availability of Growlers is my favourite refill trend. What’s a growler? It’s a large bottle, similar to a milk jug, that’s made of glass and made to keep your fresh beer in your fridge for a few days. There are so many local breweries in Vancouver that offer these and who doesn’t want a fresh pitcher or Mocha Porter in the fridge?

For more information check out:


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UnTapped 2015 – In 2 weeks, get D&I working for your Bottom Line

As many of you know; one of our goals at Fresh Start is to work with people with employment barriers helping them find meaningful employment.  To that end we are proud sponsors of Untapped 2015!

This March, join HR professionals and other Business Leaders from across BC for a day of learning how to attract talent from within the fastest growing skillsets in the province!

UnTapped 2015 – the 3rd annual BC Workplace Inclusion Awards and Conference – helps BC Employers develop strategies to access skilled talent from an often hidden workforce;  persons with disabilities, Aboriginal job-seekers, youth, women, older workers, recent immigrants, and others.  Check out this month’s HR Voice article on how companies are using inclusion as a driver of workplace culture and results.

If diversifying your recruitment and retention practices to attract top talent is an important aspect for your business, join us in Vancouver for the conference on March 10th and get D&I working to your organization’s strategic advantage.

  • Register to take advantage of the Business 3 for 2 Promotion (a sweet deal where 3 people can attend for the price of 2),
  • Enter our promo code  6N2fNt86 and receive a 10% discount off registration, courtesy of their partnership.

I hope to see you at the conference next month!

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What does Fresh Start Do?

Fresh Start helps homeowners, and building managers (among other people), to recycle and rid themselves of unwanted items around Vancouver.

Fresh Start helps people that have items of “negative value” which means what they used to pay money for, they now need to pay money to get rid of .

We make those negative value items positive again by charging to pick them up and recycle them so the circle can continue.

If you have a garage full of negative value, call Fresh Start Recycling; we’ll sort you out.

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Hey everyone.

Been a little while since I’ve written. Just getting over the holidays and getting into the swing of things. We did put out a newsletter though and you can sign up on our website. There’s also a button there for twitter. Message us and we’ll message you.

Basically our newsletter was talking about our Christmas Tree pick-up/chip-up for $20, and we have a new mattress pilot project. Friday’s we’re doing mattress only collections for $60 plus $16.50/unit (mattress and box=2 units).

We’ll see how it goes. We want to keep taking these items, but Metro Vancouver has boosted the price to $20 per unit to drop off. We’re hoping to lower the price and make it affordable by doing only mattresses on 1 day a week. I’m interested to see how it goes, but if it isn’t profitable, we’ll need to tweak collection.

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Opt out of the Yellow Pages

Want to opt out of the Yellow Pages? Courtesy of @cleanbinproject today I learned that you can opt out of the Yellow Pages. Here’s the link she gave her twitter following

Not only does the Yellow Pages use a whole heck of a lot of paper to be created, it’s basically unnecessary. Umm Google? It’s a wonderful thing. Want a Pizza? Go to google maps, type in “Pizza near ‘my address'” and presto, there’s your answer.

Also, the Yellow Pages and Canpages, are expensive to advertise in. If you want an ad that makes an impact, you need to spend around $1000 each and every month (even the slow ones!!) otherwise you’ll blend in with all the other ads in your category. Now, what’s the point of that?

Thirdly, they weigh a lot (I don’t have one handy to weigh but I did ask the greater twitter community via @startrecycling. If I were to guess, I’d say around 2 KG.) And what do we burn all that fuel for in our vehicles? To move the 150lb driver? No! That fuel is burnt to move the 1500 KG steel cage that surrounds the 75KG driver. (If you just want to move a body, a 50cc scooter engine will work handily at 60kmph)

So, not only does printing all those Yellow Pages impact the environment (I wasn’t able to find the number that are delivered in Vancouver but I expect it to be 100’s of thousands in the Metro Vancouver area) just in terms of ink, paper, etc. But think of the fuel burnt necessary to move them to their delivery locations and then pick them up when they’ve sat unread for a year holding doors open etc. Then they go across sorting lines, sorted by people that drove to work, in heated buildings and they have to be kept out of the cardboard and then shipped to a mill to be turned into pulp and so on. That’s a heck of a footprint vs. Googling “Pizza”, or “Fresh Start Recycling”.

Fresh Start will NEVER pay to advertise in the paper version of the Yellow Pages. It’s not right. It’s bad for the environment and we shouldn’t accept this from our citizens.

Check out Miss 604’s article on this from last year: I also borrowed her picture below.

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The Clean Bin Project screens w/ Metro Vancouver

Metro Vancouver announces a screening of The Clean Bin Project documentary film!

When: Friday, November 5, 7 p.m. Filmmaker Q&A to follow

Where: Djavad Mowafaghian Cinema, SFU Woodwards, 149 W Hastings, Vancouver

The Clean Bin Project is a feature documentary film about a regular couple and their quest to answer the question “is it possible to live completely waste free?”

Partners Jen and Grant go head to head in a competition to see who can swear off consumerism and produce the least landfill garbage in an entire year. Their light-hearted competition is set against a darker examination of the sobering problem waste in North American society. Even as Grant and Jen start to garner interest in their project, they struggle to find meaning in their seemingly minuscule influence on the large-scale environmental impacts of our throw-away society. Featuring interviews with renowned artist Chris Jordan and marine pollution expert Captain Charles Moore, The Clean Bin Project presents the serious topic of waste reduction with optimism, humour, and inspiration for individual action.

Tickets are $10 and can be purchased online or at the door.

You can bring your batteries, used CDs/DVDs, clean plastic bags, washed #3, #6, #7 and unnumbered plastics, Styrofoam, and small personal electronics like cell phones and music players.

We are aiming for a Zero Waste event!

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