TreeSmart Industries founder Chris Stangland discovered the power of the pencil on a business trip to China where newspaper pencils had been made for years. A former Oregon Entrepreneur of the year, he knew at once it was an idea he must take home. Oregon has been a leader in recycling for decades and it is the home of TreeSmart. Stangland, an executive in the toy and gift industry, was intrigued by the concept and knew the opportunities were limitless. He vowed to teach himself how ordinary newspaper could be recycled into a usable, sustainable product. A new company was born.
TreeSmart began manufacturing in Oregon in 2010, where the production process has been refined to create a high-quality pencil crafted from recycled material in an eco-friendly environment. Whole newspaper sheets are rolled around high quality No. 2 graphite. No toxic chemicals are used in manufacturing and the eraser tips are latex free. A special adhesive formula binds the newsprint together into a cohesive core that is hard as wood. The pencils sharpen easily and last longer than wood pencils.
Stangland began to imagine how other everyday products could be made from recycled materials. Today, TreeSmart’s process for using recycled materials produces a complete line of pencil cases, school supply boxes and mechanical pencils fabricated from potato chip bags, candy wrappers, and other snack packaging materials, keeping these non-biodegradable materials out of landfills. Mixed with recycled plastic, the products are attractive and durable. And they deliver a powerful message to our next generation of environmental leaders across the country.
TreeSmart is dedicated to the idea that all of us are responsible to our environment. By using products made from recycled material, we are doing our part to preserve precious natural resources, reduce the waste stream, and promote recycling of one product into another.
The mission of TreeSmart is to put a pencil in the hands of school children in every school in America. By teaching our children the importance of sustainability, we help them become EcoSmart Stewards of the planet. Children in their classrooms with their newspaper pencils, recycled water bottle pen, TreeSmart class activities and lesson plans, will be preparing to help everyone else become TreeSmart. That’s a really big idea with a great product and a really important message. We don’t just talk the talk, we write the right.