Lyn Chen got here residence from highschool at some point and noticed her mother washing a plastic spoon. Her automated response was, ‘why would she trouble once they’re disposable?’
However, after her mother defined that if they do not reuse it, it’s going to find yourself within the landfill, she reconsidered the necessity for plastic spoons in any respect.
“One thing actually clicked for me there,” mentioned Chen, 20.
Chen, who’s an economics scholar at Queen’s College, went on to co-found a company hoping to curb single-use plastic spoons — by making them out of candy.
Chen based Candy Cutlery with 20-year-old Daniel Van Acker, a pc science scholar at McGill College. The Markham-based company makes arduous candy dessert spoons and small cups, which can be utilized both as ice cream dishes or shot glasses.
As of this weekend, the candy utensils and dishes are being offered at Kawartha Dairy shops in Newmarket, Orillia and Barrie, and Bean and Baker Malt Store in Toronto.
“I hadn’t seen a product like this earlier than, and it did contact on a extra environmentally-friendly approach of coping with single-use disposable objects,” mentioned Brennan Anderson, co-owner of Bean and Baker Malt Store.
The spoons are offered for $1 every on the counter, and the glasses are available in containers of 4.
They’re made the identical approach as a lollipop, however with a distinct mould, in accordance to the company’s product developer Liyan Cai.
“For issues like ice cream, desserts, it is tougher to use a starch-based, toast-textured spoon,” mentioned Cai, a meals science and advertising scholar on the College of Guelph.
“Laborious candy is extra steady, extra sturdy, so you should use it to end your complete dessert or complete ice cream, and nonetheless have the spoon intact, or with out the spoon breaking.”
The launch of those merchandise comes on the identical time the town is making an attempt to scale back plastic waste. The strong waste administration division of the town has been requested by council to look into alternate options to single-use plastic.
“Plastic straws was simply one of many examples that was highlighted, however it’s broader than simply straws. It’s going to have a look at all types of single-use packaging, and these primarily constituted of plastic,” mentioned Vincent Sferrazza, director of Stable Waste Administration Providers with the town.
He mentioned they could additionally think about how to scale back the waste from scorching and chilly drink cups and takeaway containers.
Town is planning to maintain consultations with stakeholders beginning within the fall to work out what the choices are, and what may be the perfect alternate options to plastic.
“We’re actually open to any choices that stakeholders might additionally present,” mentioned Sferrazza.
Bean and Baker Malt Store has made a degree of being environmentally aware, in accordance to Anderson, altering sorts of plastic to guarantee it is recyclable, and utilizing biodegradable straws. They provide metallic spoons of their store, and now candy ones, to keep away from utilizing plastic.
“We do have a really environmentally conscious group of consumers. Quite a lot of youthful children have been taught a lot concerning the atmosphere in class,” mentioned Anderson. And thru them, he mentioned he has acquired options on how to make his enterprise extra sustainable.
Anderson mentioned he examined out the candy spoons on a few of his youthful clients earlier than deciding to order any. He mentioned they reported that they won’t get it on a regular basis, however it was a step in the suitable route towards mitigating plastic waste.
Making a dialogue
“The shoppers are going to determine for me whether or not it is a product that stays or goes,” mentioned Anderson.
“I hope it creates a dialogue and a little bit of a mindset that we ought to be aware of all of the single-use packaging that we’re utilizing for all of the comfort meals that we’re not making at residence.”
And that was the purpose for Chen, to get folks speaking concerning the greater image.
“I noticed that as each a chance in addition to an opportunity to do one thing good. It is all the time been inside me to assist the atmosphere and work out sustainability,” she mentioned.