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Childhood friends who redefined waste management in a fun way

By Dea Suluashvili

Lemon Tri is a company based in France which aims to improve recycling rates in an interactive, effective and sustainable way by offering innovative and eco-friendly services to businesses and local communities. Through their smart machines, they offer a turnkey multi-flow recycling services. 🍋 💚

How the idea became reality

Augustin Jaclin and Emmanuel Bardin, the cofounders of Lemon Tri, met in preschool in 1989. They grew up telling each other that they would create a company with an emphasis on environmental issues. They discovered few recycling solutions during their year abroad in College. Germany and countries in Northern-Europe were ahead of time in that field compared to France. They also discovered that recycling rates in highly concentrated areas like Paris or Marseille were low while unemployment rates were very high in those areas. Then, once they had finished their studies, they created Lemon Tri in 2011, in order to optimize recycling on-the-go in those areas.

Waste Reduction through incentives

Lemon Tri contributes to improve recycling rates in densely populated areas through two initiatives. Firstly, Lemon Tri offers a turnkey service for companies: waste management audit, innovating sorting device, waste collection, sensitization of employees and a communication kit. Secondly, Lemon Tri installs recycling machines in supermarkets, in Paris’ and Marseille’s areas, collecting plastic bottles. In exchange, the consumer gets a coupon in the supermarket or can donate to a charity chosen by the supermarket. Then, Lemon Tri sends collected matter into recycling factories which are all operating in France.

Recent achievements

Lemon Tri helps to improve recycling rates and sensitize people to waste management issues and challenges. Beside this environmental mission, Lemon Tri co-created a social business called Lemon Aide, with the help of Danone ecosystems and the association FACE, which acts in order to reinforce integration of longtime unemployed people. Their logistics is totally delegated to Lemon Aide and to its Lemon Aiders. They go through an intense training program which represents 20% of their worktable, so that they improve their skills in logistics and warehouse management.

How does the company define sustainability

Lemon Tri team believes that we should reduce our footprint and, in a long-term approach, get rid of it. Then, raise awareness among people and especially young generations about the importance of recycling. That is why Lemon Tri opened its warehouse and plastic lab to schools. Now pupils can discover plastic recycling process and the importance of it. Convincing the young generation to get involved in green practices can lead to a better understanding of those environmental challenges and to making our society more sustainable regarding consummation and waste management.

Overcoming current challenges

Currently, Lemon Tri works to improve transparency and tractability of collected wastes. Each customer of the company has access to performance reviews in a dedicated online space. Thanks to this digital tool, they can discover quantitative and qualitative evaluations of the waste they produced and Lemon Tri collected. The company is also able to deliver recycling certificates to them.

Vision of the future development

When we asked the team how they see the future, they said : “Our vision is not only to improve recycling rates but also to aim to reduce the production of waste. Then, we want to sanitize people to zero waste and offer a dedicated offer in the future. Cups, food plastic packaging and plastic bags are some example of garbage we could rid of.

How to contribute in Lemon Tri’s projects

Citizens are core for the company. Without their mobilization, the project would not be a success. The more bottles, cans or cups sorted into our machines or trash bags and collected by Lemon Tri, the more recycling will increase. Citizens can also become ambassadors of recycling and zero waste by spreading the message, so that our society solve environmental issues linked to wastes and plastic pollution.

Now, Emmanuel is 33 and Augustin is 32. Those two change-makers while being at college and discussing how to save our planet, had no idea that one day they would become the heroes of our generation. All they had was a clear goal and a destination to arrive at. Even though they did not have a map or compass, their dedication and hard work lead them to the right way. And we all know that good will is contagious. Today lemontri unites dozens of young and passionate individuals, who reserve the planet for next generation.


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