Green.org sits down with Aaron Saks, the General Manager of Green Paper Products, LLC to learn how they are on a mission to eliminate single use plastics by supplying their customers with compostable food service and food packaging products,
Aaron, thanks for being here. Tell us a little bit about you and your background:
I am the General Manager of Green Paper Products, LLC. My company is family-owned and operated, based in Cleveland, Ohio. We are on a mission to eliminate single use plastics. We supply our customers with compostable food service and food packaging products, including cups, bowls, plates, and many other items.
We got started in 2009 when my father and his business partner wanted to expand their recycled stational business into other sustainable paper products. They would constantly get requests for custom-printed recycled cups, which we started selling. From there, we just kept looking for the best compostable products for our customers. We look for products that are made from renewable materials, including upcycled materials such as sugarcane bagasse and wheat straw. Most of our products are certifed compostable by BPI or CMA, which means that they biodegrade in a properly managed compost and turn back into soil.
We are optimistic about the future, since we have seen solid growth every year. We have been able to expand our inventory into warehouses in Tennessee and California, and also upgrade and improve our website to make ordering easier for our customers.
What is a fun fact about you?
I am an avid biker, and I am lucky to be able to ride my bike (a Surly Straggler) to work almost every day. I usually ride 60-70 miles per week.
Why do you think climate change and sustainability is such an important topic today?
This is not a problem that we can just wish away – ignorance is not bliss. All the evidence is clear that human factors are contributing to climate change. The more we talk about it and communicate it, the more widely it will become accepted.
What do you envision your industry looking like 10 years from now?
I am hoping to see the complete elimination of single-use plastics and a much wider expansion of reusable or compostable items. I also hope to see much broader commercial composting, where all residential areas have access to compost and green waste pick-up services.
What can the average person do to make a difference?
First, use reusable products whenever possible. We all recognize that there are times when we need to use disposable goods. When we do, it’s important to choose products that are made from renewable and sustainable materials.
Aaron, thank you for sharing how you built a family business through compostable food packaging.
Dylan Welch is the CEO and Host of Going Green, a podcast, website, and social media brand that highlights renewable energy, cleantech, and sustainable news.