TORONTO, Ont. – Recent talk of trade disputes and tariffs on consumer goods is inspiring companies like GLAD to step up and tell their “Proudly Canadian”manufacturing story.
For over 50 years, the GLAD plant in Orangeville has been quietly churning out everyday household items – garbage, recycling and compostable bags – the sort of essentials few Canadians spend much time wondering where the goods come from.
“Many people might assume that these products are made outside the country – but they’re not,” says Peter Reynolds, plant manager at the Clorox Company of Canada’s GLAD plant in Orangeville.
“Consumers should take a lot of pride in knowing they’re buying Canadian and supporting local jobs.”
The plant, which employs 120 Canadians, celebrated its 50th anniversary last August, a milestone for our country’s manufacturing sector.
“The notion of pride is very strong here at the facility,” says Reynolds. “Not only in what we make, but we’re very proud to have maintained a presence for more than 50 years in a very challenging manufacturing environment.”
GLAD has become an integral part of the Orangeville community, donating more than $168,000, both corporately and through employee-led causes. GLAD employees, part of Clorox Company of Canada, can give through payroll deductions and the company will match that amount to a registered charity of the employee’s choice.
The company has also invested $22,000,000 into capital investments over the past six years. Recently, amidst large urban centres implementing compost programs, the plant doubled capacity for its compostable bags manufacturing line.
“The Orangeville factory is the sole manufacturer of Glad compostable bags for the world, and is the backbone of Canadian waste diversion,” says Mike Pilato, general manager, Clorox Company of Canada.
“It truly is a Canadian story.”
The garbage bag itself has Canadian roots, something that surprises many people. Created in 1950 by Canadian inventors Harry Wasylyk and Larry Hansen, Union Carbide Company bought the idea in the 1960s and began manufacturing the product for household use under the name GLAD trash bags.
Compostable plastics also have a Canadian legacy. In 1971, James Guillet, a University of Toronto chemist, developed a plastic material that decomposes when left in direct sunlight, paving the way for compostable and more sustainable waste management solutions which have been an important part of GLAD and the Clorox Company of Canada’s mission ever since.
“For the past fifty years, we’ve been creating innovative products to minimize the amount of material going to landfills and supporting amazing recycling programs across the country that set the bar for many others,” says Reynolds.
“We’re proud to be Canadian – and we hope our pride resonates when it comes time to making a purchase on the shelf.”