We interviewed their founder, LaTangela Newsome, who calls herself a “crazy fan of Shark Tank since Season 1.” As fate would have it, just two weeks after filing her patent paperwork, there was an open casting call for the show. “I thought I was too early but I had to at least try. I rushed my first prototype and stepped out on faith,” she said. “I am so glad I did!”
Here’s what else she told us about…
How the Idea Came About
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I am a mom and love to cook for my son. The worst part of that is disposing of the used cooking oils and fats. I had discussions with my brother and over the years continued to research a possible to solution to an old problem. One day, the answer was staring me in the face and I ran with it.
How the Disposal of Vegetable Oil Hurts the Environment
As I developed my product, I came to find out that the improper disposal of vegetable oil is causing just as much damage to the environment as crude oil. Even pouring a little grease down the drain is too much. Repairs due to clogs are not only costly to the consumer, but cities waste tons of money on pipeline replacements as well. The clogs can also lead to water pollution when sewage is backed up into storm drains and waterways.
Her Excitement in the ‘Tank’
I was only nervous to remember my numbers. I had so much information swarming through my head and didn’t want to forget anything. I was just excited to be in front of the Sharks! It’s an honor and such a coveted spot. I was so grateful and it felt like an out-of-body experience. I come from television, so cameras and turning it on comes natural to me. I loved every second!
Potential Retail Partnerships
Currently grease bags are only available via our website, http://www.greasebags.com. I hope to be available in all the major big-box retailers- Walmart, Home Depot, Lowe’s…Whole Foods is a major focus because they already have a large focus on composting and have partnered with Waste Management. If people can buy grease bags at Whole Foods, then they can return used bags there also. I would also like to team up with any municipal composting programs.
Experience With Kickstarter
When I launched my Kickstarter campaign, it was all new to me and I could have done a better job on the campaign. I did not meet my goal, but I did receive great feedback. Many people contacted me to help promote the product. I received tons of emails validating the cause. In the end, Kickstarter helped add to my confidence in my product.
Plans for the Future
I plan on educating people about the importance of proper grease disposal and encouraging people to compost more. I also plan on extending my product line with more products that take care of grease spills in the kitchen. Pretty soon you won’t need a whole roll of paper towels to clean up spilled grease. So yes, there are more amazing products coming, so stay tuned!