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Compostable poo is the way to go
8th January 2021

By Justine Thompson

Ben Dodd and his wife Sadie (above) founded Adios Plastic in 2018

A pet entrepreneur is urging dog owners and councils to use compost bins for dog waste to help fight climate change and reduce the carbon pawprint.

Ben Dodd, founder of Adios Plastic, wants to educate environmentally conscious owners to dispose of their pets’ poo naturally.

While many owners use compostable bags, they’re often left on paths, hanging in trees or put in council bins and find their way into landfill.

Ben said: “People are trying to reduce their plastic use and do their bit for the environment, which is great, but where the bags end up needs to be improved.

“For 2021, we’re going to be working to help councils provide separate bins where compostable bags can go to a compostable facility.

“Just like the compost bins we now have for our food waste, our hope is to do the same for dogs’ waste. We’ve come a long way in the last few years but there is more that we can do.

“We’d also encourage owners who are using compostable bags to have a dedicated compost bin at home or consider using a wormery where the worms will feed off the bags and waste.”

Ben and his wife Sadie, from Canterbury in Kent, founded Adios Plastic in 2018 after searching for eco friendly products for their Golden Retriever Luna.

A serial entrepreneur, Ben realised there was space in the market for bright, vibrant, poo bags that were environmentally friendly and opted to make them compostable too.

They had their official launch at PATS in February 2020 and now the bags can be found in vets, groomers, leading independent pet stores like Scampers and online at Pets At Home and Ocado.

While many businesses have struggled during the pandemic, Adios Plastic has thrived, with Ben even bringing out red reindeer print bags for Christmas and a rainbow range to cheer people up during lockdown.

Ben said: “This year has been challenging, but it’s brought lots of opportunities and has meant we have been able to be agile and really grow the brand.

“Being locked down meant I had time to contact stakeholders at organisations like Pets At Home which led to us being on their website. We go into all stores in February which we’re so proud of.

“I think we appealed to them as we’re a small, family-run business trying to educate pet owners and do our bit. We’re down to earth and don’t try to ‘greenwash.’

“Even when we started out and weren’t making a profit, we committed to donating 1% for the planet meaning one per cent of gross sales went towards protecting wildlife and the ocean.

“Our bags have been so well received by owners and the organisations we collaborate with. The industry really needed a product that was fun and innovative while kind to the environment.”

Ben says the next step is to educate people on how to dispose of the bags in a way that’s kind to the environment and plans to bring out composting kits in 2021.

While bags with dog waste need to be kept separate to those with food in, bags break down in between three to six months and what’s left can be nutritious for the soil and is safe to be spread on non-edible plants.

And with 9.5 million dogs living in the UK according to the PFMA, if owners respond to Ben’s initiative, it could make a huge difference in the fight against plastic.

Ben said: “We’ve created bags that are strong and durable that people love to use. The next piece of the jigsaw is educating owners to get rid of them the right way.

“Our goal is to have the cycle locked down and for people to compost at home and for councils to be behind us too.”