Mount Allison student-founded company using potato peels to develop building materials and reduce waste
9/11/2017 9:38:15 AM
Enviroot receives $20,000 national Enactus Award to help support start-up

Enviroot_EnactusMtASACKVILLE, NB — A group of Mount Allison University students is working to develop environmentally-friendly building materials using food remains, like potato peels. They recently received a national business prize to help them accomplish this.

Enactus Mount Allison is a team of students, advisors, and leaders dedicated to empowering their community through entrepreneurial ideas and action. The group was recently awarded a $20,000 start-up grant by Enactus Canada and the McCain Social Enterprise Project Partnership for their new business, Enviroot.

“Pitching the Enviroot concept and business idea at the national level was an amazing experience for all of us,” says biology student and Enviroot CEO Justin Trueman. “It’s very exciting to see your ideas and plans come together and to work with professionals. We’re thankful to Enactus, Mount Allison, and McCain Foods for providing us with this opportunity.”

Enviroot seeks to make environmentally-responsible building materials such as flooring, ceiling tiles, and medium-density fibreboard (MDF) using food remains, in particular potato peelings. The students are now working directly with McCain Foods, one of Canada’s largest food manufacturers, famous for their potato products. Their goal of addressing food waste matches well with those of McCain who have long been repurposing valuable food remains from their potato facilities. 

“In the three years of McCain Foods partnership with Enactus, we’ve witnessed some incredibly innovative pitches. We’re thrilled to play such a vital role in helping the young entrepreneurs behind Enviroot reach their aspirations and to bring social enterprise to Atlantic Canada” said Jeff DeLapp, President North America.

Enactus Canada is Canada’s largest student leadership development organization. The Mount Allison chapter, which currently has about 25 members, has been active for a number of years and welcomes students from all disciplines. Enviroot is one of many current projects overseen by the Mount Allison group.

“Along with the Enviroot team, we’re lucky to have a number of students from several academic areas involved in this project,” says Commerce and computer science student Cole Cadorette, who serves as the company’s CFO. “We have a team of chemistry students doing further research on our product development as part of their course work. It’s been a great experiential learning opportunity for all of us.”

The McCain Social Enterprise Project Partnership program will continue over the next year, giving Enviroot support and guidance as they apply for a patent and work to further develop their product.

Photo caption: Members of the Enviroot team at Enactus Canada event this year. Enviroot, a company founded by a team of Mount Allison University students received top prize — a $20,000 start-up grant through the McCain Social Enterprise Project Partnership  — at the Enactus Canada annual conference. The students are working to develop environmentally-friendly building materials using food remains, like potato peels.

To arrange an interview with the student founders of Enviroot, please contact the Mount Allison University communications office, 364-2600 (ldillman@mta.ca). For inquiries to McCains, please contact media@mccain.ca