Garbage Moguls: TerraCycle Turns Trash Into Treasure

Follow this small company's creative team as they rummage through the landfill looking for their next great product idea.


| April 2009 Web



TerraCycle Garbage Moguls

TerraCycle CEO Tom Szaky flies a kite made entirely from Oreo wrappers.


Photo Courtesy National Geographic/Garbage Moguls

Premiering tonight on National Geographic at 9 pm EST, the Earth Day special "Garbage Moguls" follows the Trenton, New Jersey-based company TerraCycle as it attempts to turn trash into treasure. TerraCycle, led by 27-year-old CEO Tom Szaky, salvages waste from landfills to make useful products such as pencils, reusable bags, clocks, coasters and other household and office items.

Tune in tonight to follow the TerraCycle team’s creative process, which includes field trips to the landfill and automobile junkyard. The team faces the challenge of constructing a kite made entirely from Oreo wrappers to present to Wal-Mart executives and designing a messenger bag made from old billboards and seat belts to present to Office Max executives.

“Garbage is a man-made idea, and we’ve created garbage because we haven’t created solutions for it,” Szaky says. “We take waste, we add design and produce mass merchandise.” 

TerraCycle employs more than 50 people in Trenton, New Jersey. Find TerraCycle products at Wal-Mart, OfficeMax, The Home Depot and Target. Register to win a TerraCycle recycled vinyl record clock. 

More about recycled products

• TerraCycle transforms chip bags into consumer products. Find out how you can get involved.





mother earth news fair

MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR

Oct. 21-22, 2017
Topeka, KS.

More than 150 workshops, great deals from more than 200 exhibitors, off-stage demos, inspirational keynotes, and great food!

LEARN MORE