Tanki on track for £1m sales of toilet roll
Tanki, makers of glue and plastic-free toilet roll, says it’s looking at first year sales of £1m. The company is a product of the pandemic.
Founder Matt O’Crowley, a former deck officer with the Merchant Navy, switched careers as Covid-19 took hold after discovering he was ineligible to be furloughed.
He says he saw a gap in the market for a brand that doesn’t clog up the world’s sewerage systems or seas after reflecting on the number of countries where sewer systems aren’t able to cope with paper and a bin is used instead.
“The same problem exists on ships, yachts, caravans and houses with wonky plumbing that might be connected to septic tanks and sewerage treatment systems,” says O’Crowley.
His idea, to create paper that can be safely flushed into the Arctic as it is designed to comply with maritime pollution regulations, was backed by £20,000 in funding from a start-up loan via the Biz Britain scheme and private investment.
He says onboard blockages are due in no small part to the glue in toilet paper, but when conventional paper does flush through, it is sending plastic directly into the ocean.
“The humble loo roll contains a lot more than just two or three sheets of very thin, biodegradable paper. Typically, every roll of two ply toilet paper contains 2.7g of lamination adhesive and softening agents that bond the sheets together.
“It is not currently practical to prohibit users from flushing paper down the toilet, in the same way that some countries and cities have done, but these glues and nano-plastics cannot be filtered out and treated effectively in a sewage treatment plant. Adhesives are the main cause of toilet tissue clogging up pipes, forming a slow-moving sludge, leading to blocked pipework and drains and damage to treatment systems.
“Off grid homes are now increasingly using the same technology as cruise ships to handle their waste, meaning that the same issues exist in the countryside, as at sea,” says O’Crowley.
Tanki is created using virgin pulp, a by-product of timber grown for housing, from verified sustainable and actively managed sources.
“The business has evolved exactly as planned, and is about to exceed all expectations as new markets keep opening up for the product,” says O’Crowley. “Now, the intention is to have Tanki in every boat, caravan, farmhouse and off grid home in the UK.”
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