This month, we had the pleasure of interviewing one of our valued Green Act Business Member, Abeego’s CEO Toni.
Toni was kind enough to teach us important information about food waste – and more importantly how we can ALL work together to reduce the impact it has on our planet.
By seeking out details from our Green Act Members about their specific expertise, we can inform the Random Acts of Green community about certain subjects that are important to our environment.
Q1: Toni – please tell us – how does something as simple as the way we store our food contribute to our fight against climate change?
Over 40% of food produced in North America gets thrown away. Much of that is happening in our kitchens as a result of the way we store our food. For example: In plastic, food rots and spoils because it’s airtight. Left bare, food loses nutrients and moisture content, which quickly results in wilted, lifeless produce. When we save food, we save the resources, time, and money that go into getting that food into our kitchens. Something as simple as saving half an avocado supports the entire food ecosystem.
Q2: Tell us about YOU. Why beeswax wraps? What inspired you?
I was working as a holistic nutritionist at a health food store in 2008. Here we were concerned about nutrition and everything was stored in plastic! I knew there had to be a better way to save food. I believed that something as natural as preserving our food would have a nature-made solution, so I created some rules for myself and got to work. In my invention, each ingredient had to be natural in its natural state, plastic free, edible, natural preservative qualities, and pre-approved by the FDA for food contact. Inspired by nature’s skin, peel, and rind I created the world’s first breathable food wrap. Since then I’ve been on a mission to Keep Food Alive for a food secure world.
Q3: Why is beeswax healthier and more sustainable than plastic?
Now more than ever before, there’s a global movement to reduce waste. With Canada’s recent announcement to ban single-use plastics, consumers are looking for natural ways to store their food. Enter Abeego. Beeswax is naturally antibacterial and, combined with our other ingredients, make our wraps the best option for your plastic-free food storage. All of these materials come from the Earth in their natural state, and will return to it without a trace.
Q4: Does beeswax work BETTER than plastic at keeping food fresh?
The short answer—yes!
Plastic is airtight and transparent. Nature’s lemon peel is breathable and opaque. So we created a back-to-the-earth food wrap that’s reflective of nature’s way of storing food. Abeego wraps are breathable yet at the same time protect your food from air, light, and moisture. The result: zesty lemons, green avocados, and crisp greens for longer than ever imagined.
Q5: We know that Abeego wants to become “zero waste” what does that mean? How will you accomplish this ambitious goal?
From the beginning I’ve always had a zero-waste facility in mind with the ultimate goal of a closed-loop manufacturing system. Every resource that goes into our wraps is valued and so none go to waste. Currently, our wrap trimmings, which some may see as waste, have been given new life as our Firestarters product. Our most precious resource is our people; last year we eschewed the idea of minimum wage in favour of living wages for all employees. Sustainability is also worked into our business model—we offer a fair price that accounts for fair wages and quality ingredients. We never discount because discounts would come at a cost to our product quality, employees and all those we work with.
Q6: What tips can you offer to the Random Acts of Green community to become zero waste?
Do one thing that works for you and do it daily. When that feels easy pick another one. Reducing waste in small daily bites makes a big difference. Here’s a fun way to cut back on waste—learn to make one of your favourite packaged foods from scratch! I’ve recently started making fresh nut milk. It’s incredibly easy, tastes a million times better, costs a fraction of the price and is naturally zero waste.
Q7: What is the life cycle of the Abeego wrap? How was it made, what can it do? how long does it last? What to do with it when it is worn out?
With good care and regular use, Abeego can be used for over a year. Abeego’s real win is its ability to preserve living food for longer. This means that the life of your fruit, vegetables, cheese, and even bread is extended, giving you more time to finish your food and save it from becoming waste. Ending food waste is one of the easiest and most impactful way to reduce your carbon footprint at the household level! Because they’re made from all-natural ingredients, Abeego may be safely composted at the end of its lifespan or used as firestarters. It’s a goodbye you can feel good about.
Thank you Toni for your time.
Thank you to Abeego for being a Green Act Business Member and believing that seemingly small changes can add up to make a BIG collective impact!
We know that we can all do our part to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.