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|Articles - December 2011|
|Tuesday, November 15, 2011|
By Kristen Hall-Geisler
When Donavan started the company in 2009, the idea was to keep dog waste — and the plastic bags that often encase it — out of the landfill. Collecting it and composting it would not only offer Oregonians a greener option, but Green Pet Compost stood to profit on both ends of the process.
The pickup business has been doing well since Donavan started it, but the compost business needed to be ramped up. Steve and brother Greg invested the capital to bring the waste to Poulsbo, Wash., and compost it.
The startup costs for composting pet waste were steep. The in-vessel composter itself ran about $40,000, plus they needed forklifts for moving the compost around. Even though they built the mixers and augurs themselves, the Dreilings invested $100,000 in startup costs alone.
The reuse aspect is still in its early stages. The first batches of compost were only finished midway through 2011, just in time for Oregon’s busiest growing season to wrap up. The Dreilings have hired a marketing expert to help overcome the “yuck factor,” as Dreiling calls it, and get the product to potential clients who use compost year-round. Only one-fifth of Green Pet Compost’s capacity is being used.
Overcoming the yuck factor is going to be a matter of getting the compost onto the shelves and into flowerbeds. “Once we mix the waste with a carbon source, primarily sawdust, there is no smell,” he says. During the compost process, the whole vessel stays consistently hot, at 131-150 degrees for 72-100 hours, which kills all pathogens.
For now, customers can buy the finished compost at a wholesale price, and bags will be delivered at the next scheduled pickup. Green Pet Compost is working to get the nitrogen-rich product into retail stores.
Green Pet Compost has plans to expand in the future from organic and natural pet foods and toys to natural gas produced by composting that can power the pickup and delivery trucks. But the company’s focus right now is on the composting operation and getting the compost into the market.
“Pick-up is doing better than compost,” says Dreiling. “We hope that’ll change.”
Wednesday, June 03, 2015
As part of our green workplaces story, Oregon Business checked out a community service project undertaken by Portland Youth Builders, a nonprofit alternative high school. In partnership with Whole Foods, PYB built garden boxes for a Home Forward housing site. Home Forward is a government agency that provides housing for low income residents and people with disabilities.
Friday, May 22, 2015
BY AMY MILSHTEIN
Astrid Scholz scales up sustainability.
Friday, May 08, 2015
BY CHRIS NOBLE | PHOTOS BY JASON E. KAPLAN
Hagfish may not have evolved much over the last 300 million years, but their protein-heavy slime promises advances in super-materials.
Friday, May 22, 2015
BY JOE CORTRIGHT
How conservation stimulates the local economy.
Thursday, June 18, 2015
While most categories of commercial real estate have performed well, one of the most robust has been apartment buildings.
Thursday, May 14, 2015
BY JASON E. KAPLAN | STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
There are more than 160 farmers markets in Oregon, contributing an estimated $50 million in sales, according to the Oregon Farmers Markets Association. We checked in on the Forest Grove market, which for several years has brought local produce and food vendors to Main Street in the center of town.
Friday, May 22, 2015
BY ROBERT MULLIN
Latest development in Nestlé plant saga sparks debate about the value of water.
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