Saving the World, One Dog Food Bag at a Time

It began with liquefied worm poop and turned in to a world leader in upcycling and recycling. Tom Szaky dropped out of Princeton University to found TerraCycle, a company that specializes in the collection and repurposing of hard-to-recycle post-consumer waste, ranging from used chip bags to coffee capsules to cigarette butts. Now, thanks to a partnership with natural pet food brand Wellness, empty packaging from their TruFood line joins the list.

Tom began the company by producing organic fertilizer—that icky wormy stuff we won’t mention twice—in used soda bottles. Now TerraCycle is one of the fastest-growing green companies in the world.

“We’re very excited for our partnership with TerraCycle,” says Chanda Leary-Coutu, Wellness Senior Manager of Marketing Communications. “Many of our consumers embrace a green lifestyle, and we’re happy to offer an easy way for them to recycle their pet food packaging, something we know is important to them.”

Each year, across 21 countries, TerraCycle collects and repurposes billions of pieces of waste, donating millions of dollars to schools and charities in the process. Like all of TerraCycle’s collected waste, the TruFood packaging will be reused, upcycled, or recycled into affordable, sustainable consumer products, such as park benches, bike racks, pet food bowls and recycling bins, that would otherwise be destined for landfills.

The waste is collected through free, national, brand-funded platforms called "Brigades," as well as various consumer and government-funded models. 

Once a registered Wellness Pet Food Brigade member, individuals and organizations can collect their pet food bags in any cardboard box, download a UPS pre-paid shipping label directly from their accounts, and drop off the boxes at any UPS store or pick-up site.

For each pre-paid shipment of TruFood bags weighing at least two pounds, Wellness Brigade members earn points that can be used for charity gifts or converted to cash and donated to charities of their choice. Those interested can register for free here.

Wellness is even bringing the TruFood experience to local pets with the Wellness TruFood Wagon, which kicked off in June and runs through October 2015, which will be making a national tour, with free samples, activities, and further information on their recycling program with TerraCycle. The wagon will visit New York, Phoenix, San Diego, Seattle, St. Paul, Chicago, Toronto, and Boston. Tour details can be found here.

TerraCycle strives to be a driving force behind increasing environmental awareness and action, and Wellness’ TruFood line is grain-free, raw-inspired nutrition, so the partnership is a natural. Literally.

TerraCycle is even the subject of a new half-hour comedy, “Human Resources,” on Pivot TV. Season two airs August 7.

Watch the season premiere here: