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The concept came to Felix over a sushi dinner with his partner, where he shared his frustration about the amount of construction waste generated in the city: over 600,000 tonnes a year - an amount that wasn’t imaginable for the everyday consumer. There wasn’t enough interest for his project proposal to use material from demolition and construction sites in the wood industry. He had to find a better way to communicate, in an easily digestible format, what a devastating impact this waste has on the environment, regardless of who was listening.
His partner (and now our co-founder) looked down at the disposable chopsticks in her hands, and asked, “Why not start with something more tangible?”. Felix, who learned English from watching the TV show How I Met Your Mother, responded without hesitation: “Challenge accepted”. What seemed ridiculous at the moment became viable as Felix began to work out the logistics with his wood science coop student, Hugh Grady (who became our Founding Partner). It made sense. So he set his mind on a new goal: recycle used chopsticks to show everyone the feasibility of creating a viable business model while utilizing neglected resources.
And that was the beginning of our crazy adventure.
With over 100,000 disposable chopsticks being thrown out daily in Metro Vancouver alone, Felix initiated a chopstick collection program by investing into cardboard bins and partnering with restaurants in Kitsilano. His background in wood engineering and research on bamboo composite materials created a strong foundation to accelerate the development of ChopValue’s initial products.
From restaurants to customers, people were
supportive of our mission to extend the life of an everyday
product that would have otherwise ended up in the landfill.
Today, we manufacture a wide-range of products.
Our offerings include sustainable home décor to zero waste furniture for
everyday customers, and we also provide eco-friendly custom solutions
for our closed-loop partners, such as businesses and real estate developers.