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Guelph's Danby Appliances finds a cool new way to deal with household garbage

Petal is a new product Danby Appliances will help bring to market which combines a household garbage can with a freezer
A Petal zero-odour, germ-freezing waste bin can be used in the kitchen or even a baby's room, as seen in this handout photo by

Danby Appliances has partnered with a U.S. company to bring to market a household garbage container that is also a freezer, which the company says will cut down on the spread of germs and smells in the kitchen.

Danby CEO Jim Estill became aware of the not-yet-produced product by Texas-based Petal about a year ago, said Don Twerdun, director of marketing for Danby by phone on Friday.

The product, which the company said is the first zero-odour, germ-freezing waste bin, will be named Petal.

“Jim heard about this product and was very interested because Danby has been doing refrigeration well for 70 years. This company (Petal) came up with something new and interesting,” said Twerdun.

The idea is simple: a household garbage can that is placed within an enclosure that freezes the contents. It can be used in the kitchen, a baby's room or anywhere else in the house where garbage smells and germs can be prevalent.

“Like most innovative products, it’s so simple to understand you sort of wonder why they don’t have them right now for consumers?” said Twerdun. 

Petal can be used for household waste, food scraps, dirty diapers, feminine hygiene products, medical and pet waste.

Twerdun said Petal could help reduce plastic waste because it eliminates the need to wrap smelly or germ-filled garbage in their own bags before being put in the trash.

“In fact you don’t need any bags. You can just take the whole bucket out and dump it into the receptacle for the garbage,” said Twerdun. “In mid summer those garbage cans can have some interesting odours and visitors coming to it, so this will eliminate that, keeps it cleaner with less chance of germs spreading.” 

He notes larger industrial products do exist.

“There are giant commercial refrigerators for industrial garbage in big kitchens and things like that, for the same reason; to keep smell down and keep germs down,” said Twerdun.

The product has been designed by Petal and will carry that company’s branding. Danby will assist in finding a manufacturer for it and assist in the distribution.

“They came up with the idea, are doing the engineering and the industrial design and are partnering with Danby because we have been doing refrigeration and freezers forever and we will be able to fast track it for them because we already deal with manufacturers all over the word,” said Twerdun.

"Danby is a world-class manufacturer and one of the largest and most innovative appliance companies on the continent,” said David M. M. Taffet, Petal co-founder and CEO in a press release. "Our partnership will allow Petal to achieve the economies of scale necessary to deliver on its reimagining of the in-home waste storage process, while positioning us for future expansion beyond the North American market.”

"Petal has been on my radar for a while,” said Estill in the release. "At Danby, we are thrilled to help bring this innovative new household appliance, that freezes organic waste, to market.” 

“On a personal level, I am impressed by Petal's sincere commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, and look forward to supporting this majority-female owned company's efforts to reduce our reliance on environmentally-devastating single-use plastic bags,” said Estill.

Christie Zwahlen, Petal co-founder and Executive VP of Social Impact, said Estill is a powerful example of how business leaders and businesses can be a force for good in our world.

"Jim has done it all as an entrepreneur, but it is his heart and compassionate leadership demonstrated over four decades of humanitarian work that is most impressive about him," said Zwahlen.

Twerdun said the product will likely hit stores in spring or summer 2021.


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Kenneth Armstrong

About the Author: Kenneth Armstrong

Kenneth Armstrong is a news reporter and photojournalist who regularly covers municipal government, business and politics and photographs events, sports and features.
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