Sun | Sep 22, 2019

Eco Tings providing environmentally friendly cutlery and utensils

Published:Friday | July 19, 2019 | 12:30 AMPaul H. Williams/Gleaner Writer
Christoff Johnson of Eco Tings with metal cups sold by the online business.
Christoff Johnson of Eco Tings with metal cups sold by the online business.

More and more people are concerned about environmental degradation and preservation. It is widely believed that some of the cutlery and utensils we use are significantly contributing to the destruction of the environment and so there are efforts to discontinue the use of such items and replace them with eco-friendly ones.

One entrepreneurial venture that is now fulfilling the needs for eco-friendly items is Eco Tings, an online entity that sells reusable drinking straws, metal coconut openers, tea infusers, wooden forks, ceramic knives, nutmeg bags, vegetable peelers, storage bags, loafer pods, reusable storage bags, soap bags and other items made of bamboo, metal, wood, glass and non-toxic silicone.

Eco Tings is the brainchild of Samuel ‘Sammo’ Johnson, graphic designer, creative director, music video director, artiste manager, among other things.

He said from travelling the world with people who are interested in eco-friendly things, he saw items that they use that we did not have in Jamaica. He himself did not want to use plastic cutlery and utensils, so that perhaps was the inspiration for the business. So, it was not because of the Government’s ban on plastic at the time. That was just a “natural timing” he said.

However, the idea for a business really came about when he saw “everybody” in Brazil using metal coconut openers, instead of chopping the coconut. The idea is to open the coconut from the soft end into which the opener is inserted.

He got the idea that he could bring back some of the openers to Jamaica since coconuts are popular here. Yet, other eco-friendly items are in the mix. Since 2018, he has been buying stocks. When he started to market them, he said that was when he heard about the ban on plastic.

Because of the ban, he said, people started to pay attention to his business since it started operations in November last year.

“It is definitely doing well and is something I want to do,” Johnson told The Gleaner, at the recent Green Expo held inside the National Arena.