Canadian duo invent a toothpaste tablet to eliminate plastic tubes
In order to combat the hundreds of millions of empty toothpaste tubes that are destined for landfill across the world each year, Canadian entrepreneurs Mike Medicoff and Damien Vince have created a toothpaste that comes in the form of a tablet. Dubbed Change Toothpaste, this innovative hygiene product is a creative solution to using traditional toothpaste tubes made with several layers of plastics, polymers, and resins that cannot be recycled and take over half a millennium to break down.
“Toothpaste tubes take over 500 years to break down and are unable to be recycled," Medicoff and Vince say. "If we want to be sustainable, a fundamental change is required. We’ve developed toothpaste tablets that remove the need for a tube altogether. We want to ensure that our kids and their kids are able to live their lives in a safe, healthy environment.”
Inspired by Mike Medicoff's 16-year-old daughter, who was determined to make their family home plastic-waste-free, the pair set about researching how to make a toothpaste that didn't come in a plastic tube. A process that would take the men months to work through and over one hundred different testing formulas.
“We ordered some lab coats, rolled up our sleeves and got to work developing a no-tube toothpaste,” say the pair. “We knew it had to taste good and work just like regular paste or people would not change that habit.”
The end result is a small white tablet that replaces the need for toothpaste all together. The Change Toothpaste tablets are designed to be placed between the back teeth, gently bitten down upon and then brushed with a wet toothbrush. The broken tablet then starts to foam and you can brush your teeth as usual.
The Change Toothpaste tablets are free from fluoride, gluten, dairy, nuts and soy and are suitable for vegans. Ingredients include dicalcium phosphate, erythritol, xylitol, spearmint flavor, sodium C14-16 olefin sulfonate, sodium bicarbonate, menthol, silicon dioxide, and mentha spicata leaf extract. The duo consulted with dentists and medial practitioners to ensure all ingredients are safe for both adults and children.
“After trying over a hundred formulations, we created the perfect toothpaste tablet recipe, that give you a clean, fresh brush without any harsh chemicals, and packaged in 100 percent compostable pouches. Just like paste, without the waste!” the pair say.
The zero-waste tablets come in compostable paper bag packaging, with each bag containing 65 tablets. Consumers also have the option of purchasing a bamboo toothbrush with their order. Although the current product does not contain fluoride, the pair is working on a new formula that will include fluoride-containing compounds that help prevent tooth decay.
The spearmint flavored Change Toothpaste tablets cost US$9.95 per bag and should provide enough tablets to see a single user through to the end of the month.
The video below is a presentation from the Change Toothpaste founders.
Source: Change Toothpaste via Treehugger
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No waste and inexpensive.
And who's idea is it to sell them in a 'paper' bag of all things. So the bag gets wet and the tablets fizz up stick together or congeal into a block.
Other commentors have pointed out the obvious implementations that were far better such as tooth powder in a tin or tub - both of which can be recycled and protect the product.
Tablets take up more volume than powder or a solid block that you could rub the toothbrush onto.
Personally, I agree with another commentor that this was indeed a waste of time and we should revert to using tins/tubs of toothpaste.
there may be hygienic issues of dipping a toothbrush continuously into a tin/tub but no different to leaving microscopic traces on end of a tube opening.
That doesn't guarantee they really are recycled, unfortunately.