Ozzy Lang and Emily Bartlett - Green Cup

For any individual, tackling one of the world's largest sources of waste can be a daunting task, let alone while simultaneously working towards your Bachelor's Degree. For Emily Bartlett and Ozzy Lang, giving up or making excuses was not an option. The problem: coffee cup waste.

Alongside his Enactus Mount Royal Team, Ozzy Lang began brainstorming ways to combat the reduction of coffee cup waste in local Canadian landfills. What started as a grassroots initiative inside Lang's garage - grinding cups and molding them into baseboards, shedding cups and using them as insulation - has now morphed into a social enterprise.

After acknowledging their lack of knowledge in engineering, the team decided to steer away from bandaid solutions and started looking towards their team's skills. By utilizing Bartlett's marketing experience from Design4Change, together Bartlett and Lang launched Green Cup, a social enterprise marketing agency. Green Cup sells advertising space on compostable cups and distributes those cups in the advertiser's target market.

"Over the last 8 months, I've had the pleasure to work with a couple of young entrepreneurs, Ozzy Lang and Emily Bartlett. They started their journey full of passion about the massive amount of waste that coffee cups contributed to our landfill. They tried collecting cups on campus and even ran a change.org campaign to raise awareness and received over 60,000 signatures on a petition emploring Tim Hortons to switch to compostable cups. Their passion took them pretty far, but it didn't result in the tangible change that they had hoped for.

Then they started looking at the problem as an entrepreneurial venture rather than a cause. Why do coffee vendors use non-compostable cups? They are cheaper. What if it was actually cheaper to use compostable cups? Interesting. How could they make this happen? (I love the Why, What if, How approach to finding opportunities - give it a try.)"

Ray DePaul

Passion is necessary but insufficient, May 19 2016, Institute For Innovation and Entrepreneurship Blog

Fast forward three months later, Bartlett and Lang took the big stage during the JMH LaunchPad Pitch Competition, sharing that they had made their first $10,000 in sales and are showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon. Soon after they were accepted into the ATB Booster crowdfunding program. Through this program Bartlett and Lang raised awareness, gained supporters through 39 backers, and secured $5,020 funding. They plan to continue making an impact, one cup at a time, through controlled environments such as high schools and events.

--- Watch Green Cup's BoostR ---

Discover if Crowdfunding is the next step for you

ATB BoostR presents: Crowdfunding 101 November 22 10:00AM and 3:30PM

Register here: atbboostrmru.eventbrite.ca