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Betterbin: Recycle and compost, right

Combining data, tech and passion to transform recycling, composting and food waste prevention education

$1,250
pledged of$7,500 goal
19
0Days Left

Project Description

OUR MISSION
Betterbin makes it easier for consumers to recycle right, prevent food waste and compost right. We harness the power of data to make localized recycling and composting education accurate, convenient and accessible to all consumers. Check out our pitch that aired on Project Pitch It!

THE PROBLEM WE ARE SOLVING
It’s hard to recycle and compost right. Why? Guidelines vary from one community to the next; packaging is complex; and brands put the three-arrow recycling symbol on everything. Consumers throwing the wrong materials in recycling bins costs the material recovery industry $300M annually. Food waste in landfills generates 20% of the United States’ methane emissions. Only time will tell what the costs will be on the earth and your own pocket book.

HOW DO WE SOLVE THE PROBLEM? 
The material recovery ecosystem in the U.S. is complex. In addition, recycling and composting education has yet to make its way into the digital age. Betterbin’s proprietary database of brand-level, product-specific, and location-dependent recycling and composting instructions powers a consumer-facing app for communities and a commercial-facing API database subscription for grocery retailers that gets users the real-time information they need to recycle and compost, right. We make sure the right materials go into recycling and composting bins. The better we are at putting the right materials in our bins, the higher is the resale value of those materials, and the more financially viable are recycling and composting programs.

HOW WILL WE USE THE FUNDING?
Betterbin launched in its current beta form in Weston, WI (recycling app), City of Madison (composting app); and on two college campuses, Edgewood College (Madison, WI) and University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point (Stevens Point, WI) (both recycling apps). We are now crowdfunding on the ifundwomen platform to build a more polished version of the app and more scalable version of our database so that we can go to market in a bigger way.

THE MARKET SIZE
Our initial target market for the app is municipal curbside recycling and composting programs. There are 9,800 curbside recycling and 771 food scrap/organic waste programs in the U.S. Other target markets for the app include college campuses, apartment complexes, large corporate campuses and commercial food waste generators (restaurants). Our initial target market for access to our database is grocery retailers. There are about 40,000 retail grocery stores and 155,000 convenience stores in the U.S.

OUR TEAM
Betterbin’s core team brings the relevant technical expertise, knowledge of the material recovery industry and passion for using data to disrupt traditional recycling and composting education. Team members include:

Co-founder and CEO Michelle Goetsch holds an M.S. in Life Science Communications from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and BA from the University of Michigan. Michelle brings to ERbin expertise in technical communication and creative marketing, a wide network of corporate sustainability professionals and an inherent passion for environmental responsibility.

Data Scientist Ian Miller holds a PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences. Ian is a data scientist, computational biologist, and [bio]tech entrepreneur with a background in drug discovery and bioanalytical chemistry. Ian is the mastermind behind ERbin’s database development, which includes machine learning and image-based classification methodologies.

Betterbin also has an awesome crew of talented contractors who work on various mission-critical projects.

THANK YOU FOR MAKING OUR WORK POSSIBLE!
Your support means the world to us! We’ve been working so hard for the past year-and-a-half to bring this idea to life. We see an opportunity to completely change the way future generations learn about recycling, preventing food waste and composting; but we can only make it happen with supporters like you. Thank you for being a part of this arduous and exciting start-up journey!

Updates

The Campaign FAQs

+ Where is Kronenwetter, WI?
We are located just south of Wausau, WI, a central WI city that is about a four-hour drive north of Chicago.

+ Grants and Awards
- 2018 Ideadvance Seed-Fund Stage 1 grant recipient
- 2019 Ideadvance Seed-Fund Stage 2 grant recipient
- 2019 Doyenne Evergreen Fund recipient
- 2019 HATCH Pitch Contest winner (1st place and people’s choice award)
- 2020 Project Pitch It Contestant and winner

*No debt, no financing, no equity-dilution of any kind to-date

+ Accolades and Pre-revenue Partners:
- 2019 WI Governor’s Business Plan Contest finalist (top 12 of 220 entries)
- 2019 WI Dept. of Natural Resources Recycling Excellence, Innovation in Recycling Award
- Sponsor: Rocket Industrial – International packaging solutions provider, sponsor to launch in central WI
- Sponsor/Donor: Waste Management and Advanced Disposal – Both are waste management providers who are  sponsoring some of our initial community-specific launches

+ What's your startup story?
In May 2018, Betterbin co-founders Michelle Goetsch and Charles Kijek received grant funding through the University of Wisconsin-Extension-funded Ideadvance Seed Funding Program. The program is similar to a startup incubator, but solely focused on the lean-startup methodology. We began that program as an idea in Michelle’s head, and have executed our business plan to the point that we now have a core team of 3 (+10 college students), app launches in five communities, follow-on funding and multiple accolades. We launched a beta test of the recycling app in March 2019 in the Village of Weston (WI), in partnership with the Marathon County Solid Waste Department, Village of Weston, Portage County Material Recovery Facility and Advanced Disposal. A full launch of the composting component of the app took place in July 2019 in Madison, WI for their Community Composting Trial Program. Two new launches kicked-off in early 2020 at Edgewood College (Madison, WI) and the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point (Stevens Point, WI) - both recycling programs. A new launch in Madison, WI  (composting app) took place in May 2020 and, another is slated in Brown County (Green Bay area (composting app)) around June 1.

 

Kim Susens
07/28/2020
Monetary Contribution
$50
Rob Manzke
07/17/2020
Feeling Midwest Nice?
$25
Annie Wetter
07/14/2020
Monetary Contribution
$150
Megan Brueggeman
07/12/2020
Sip Siren Shrub on us!
$100
Erin Wilson
07/07/2020
Urban Planning Excursion
$150
07/07/2020
Monetary Contribution
$200
Susan Schuller
07/06/2020
Monetary Contribution
$25
Michael Casbourne
07/05/2020
Monetary Contribution
$100
Linda
07/05/2020
Feeling Midwest Nice?
$50
07/02/2020
Sip Siren Shrub on us!
$50
Monetary Contribution

Monetary contribution with no reward: Because you want to be an integral part in bringing Betterbin to communities across the U.S. but don’t want anything but good Karma in return. Thank you for your support and vote of confidence! Thanks for seeing the positive impact we can make with better sustainable materials management on our shared earth.

8 Supporters
Select this reward
50.00 USD
Sip Siren Shrub on us!

You get a bottle of Door County Tart Cherry shrub! Two Stevens Point, WI-based lady entrepreneurs crafted these flavorful concentrates made from tangy, raw, organic apple cider vinegar, fresh fruits, roots, and herbs, and just the right amount of organic cane sugar or maple syrup.  Loved by the drinkers and non-drinkers alike, Siren Shrubs take drinks up a notch with their unique flavor complexities. Cheers to supporting our fellow Wisconsin women entrepreneurs!

+ We’ll also make sure your community gets on a waitlist for the Betterbin app

95 Left
5 Supporters
Select this reward
150.00 USD
Urban Planning Excursion

Ever travel to Chicago? Interested in urban planning such as placemaking, sustainability, biking and pedestrian infrastructure and more? Walk and bike Chicago neighborhoods while exploring these topics with passionate urban planner Emily Egan! We love this packaging-free reward!

*We'll cover the costs for this Airbnb Experience:  https://www.airbnb.com/experiences/680851; you must pay for all other travel expenses

+ We’ll also send you two other reward products made by amazing Wisconsin-based women entrepreneurs: a candle by Midwest Nice Candle Company and a bottle of Siren Shrubs’ Door County Tart Cherry Shrub.

+ We’ll also make sure your community gets on a waitlist for the Betterbin app

9 Left
1 Supporter
Select this reward
500.00 USD
Future angel

We have a waitlist of customers that need us to scale NOW. We will need capital investment to make this fast growth possible. This reward gets you an exclusive invitation to our friends and family investment round! 

+ We’ll also send you two other reward products made by amazing Wisconsin-based women entrepreneurs: a Midwest Nice Candle Company candle and a bottle of Siren Shrubs’ Door County Tart Cherry Shrub. 

+ We’ll also make sure your community gets on a waitlist for the Betterbin app 

10 Left
0 Supporters
Select this reward

Rewards

Monetary Contribution

Monetary contribution with no reward: Because you want to be an integral part in bringing Betterbin to communities across the U.S. but don’t want anything but good Karma in return. Thank you for your support and vote of confidence! Thanks for seeing the positive impact we can make with better sustainable materials management on our shared earth.

8 Supporters
Select this reward
50.00 USD
Sip Siren Shrub on us!

You get a bottle of Door County Tart Cherry shrub! Two Stevens Point, WI-based lady entrepreneurs crafted these flavorful concentrates made from tangy, raw, organic apple cider vinegar, fresh fruits, roots, and herbs, and just the right amount of organic cane sugar or maple syrup.  Loved by the drinkers and non-drinkers alike, Siren Shrubs take drinks up a notch with their unique flavor complexities. Cheers to supporting our fellow Wisconsin women entrepreneurs!

+ We’ll also make sure your community gets on a waitlist for the Betterbin app

95 Left
5 Supporters
Select this reward
150.00 USD
Urban Planning Excursion

Ever travel to Chicago? Interested in urban planning such as placemaking, sustainability, biking and pedestrian infrastructure and more? Walk and bike Chicago neighborhoods while exploring these topics with passionate urban planner Emily Egan! We love this packaging-free reward!

*We'll cover the costs for this Airbnb Experience:  https://www.airbnb.com/experiences/680851; you must pay for all other travel expenses

+ We’ll also send you two other reward products made by amazing Wisconsin-based women entrepreneurs: a candle by Midwest Nice Candle Company and a bottle of Siren Shrubs’ Door County Tart Cherry Shrub.

+ We’ll also make sure your community gets on a waitlist for the Betterbin app

9 Left
1 Supporter
Select this reward
500.00 USD
Future angel

We have a waitlist of customers that need us to scale NOW. We will need capital investment to make this fast growth possible. This reward gets you an exclusive invitation to our friends and family investment round! 

+ We’ll also send you two other reward products made by amazing Wisconsin-based women entrepreneurs: a Midwest Nice Candle Company candle and a bottle of Siren Shrubs’ Door County Tart Cherry Shrub. 

+ We’ll also make sure your community gets on a waitlist for the Betterbin app 

10 Left
0 Supporters
Select this reward