035: How we can turn our waste into treasures with Tiffany Threadgould

Tiffany Threadgould

In this episode, we talk to Tiffany Threadgould. She is an eco-lifestyle expert who spreads do-it-yourself recycling goodness with simple solutions. She also has a published book, ReMake It and she is currently the Chief Design Junkie at TerraCycle, a mega recycling company. 

During this episode, we take a look at how TerraCycle recycle hard to recycle items. What it takes to be a Chief Design Junkie, some of their upcycled art pieces that have created. Tiffany also gives us some tips on how we can upcycle at home.  

Episode Highlights

[01:23] How did your sustainable journey start?

[02:41] I really do feel that everything can be given another life, it just is the lens that you are looking through it.

[03:02] What is TerraCycle?

[03:05] We are a recycling company but we focus on hard to recycle materials.

[04:08] We have a team of both designers an scientists on staff to figure out solutions for all of these weird materials that come our way.

[06:00] Packaging is really the number one thing recycled through TerraCycle and within packaging you have different categories. So flexible film packaging is one thing. Your lightweight chip bags and snacks packages and you also have the more durable pouches. Like your pouched food like baby food, some drinks come in pouches, like apple sauces, things of that nature and toothpaste would fall in that category too.

[06:35] Cigarette butts are one of the number one litter problems that are out there.

[08:12] Some of our major markets are the United States, England and Australia, but there are a number of other countries that participate. We are active in Japan, Mexico and a number of European countries and Canada.

[11:03] We are launching the first dirty diaper program in Amsterdam.

[16:40] More about Tiffany’s book, titled ReMake.

[18:06] Wat has been one of your most important decisions that you have made around mama earth?

[18:13] I don’t just work at a recycling company, it is part of everything that I do.

Final Five

1. What is one social media platform that you follow?


2. What is your hope for mama earth going forward?

 I hope that more people are cognizant of what they are consuming and what they are disposing of and quite honestly I would love to get to a point where TerraCycle does not exist anymore because single-use plastic and garbage does not exist. 

3. What advise can you give our crazy birds this week to help out mama earth?

Rethink things before you throw them away. 

4. What is one sustainability fact that you like to use in a room with people not yet on a sustainability journey?

Over 40% of landfill waste is packaging materials. So that is materials that are only in your hand for a minute if that and then it goes into the garbage.

5. Where can people find you?

TerraCycle’s Facebook

Tiffany’s Instagram

TerraCycle’s Instagram

Tiffany’s Youtube

TerraCycle’s Youtube

Tiffany’s Website

TerraCycle’s Website

Key Take Away

“Rethink things before you throw them away.“

This is something that I could not have said better. Rethinking not only what you throw away but also what you bring into your environment all plays a big role. When we look at the term “away” what does that mean? Is there a place called away where all our waste magically go to and disappear, or is away just another word for a landfill? So when we do throw something “away” do we think on where it will be going next? It is therefore important to look at items before purchaisng them or brinign them into our lives to make sure that we really need the item and when it comes time to discard the item that we can be sure the items can be recycled, composted or even upcycled to give the item a second life.


About the author, Mariska

Hi and welcome! My name is Mariska. I am originally from South Africa, but now call the world my home. I am an artist, designer, environmentalist, podcast host and speaker.

I started the Mama Earth Talk podcast in 2018 to share some of the things that I learned about just how easy it can be to reduce your impact on the environment. This then quickly grew into a forum that showcases the amazing things that many people are doing to make the planet better, and further into a source of hope and inspiration for many. A few of the amazing guests include Zero Waste Queen, Bea Johnson, Claude Silver, Kathryn Kellogg and zero waste chef Max La Manna.

If you do not already I urge you to follow me and my journey on social media (@designbymariska), and to refuse, reduce, reuse, recycle and rot your own waste using the handy tips I post!


  1. Dorthy on 04/07/2019 at 6:36 AM

    I like the report

  2. review on 04/13/2019 at 4:25 AM

    Thanks, it’s quite informative

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