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TOMbag – the world’s first reusable garbage bag

1 September 2021 | Member Stories

Tombags Catalyst 2030 member story

SDG 12 Responsible consumption and production SDG 13 Climate action

TOMbag Australian social enterprise and new Catalyst 2030 member is on a mission to rid the world of single-use plastic garbage bags with its sustainable and truly circular alternatives.

TOMbag was founded by the husband and wife team, Johnathan and Sasha Pestano. Inspired by her love for nature and desire to create a better future for her daughter, Sasha conceived the idea of a reusable garbage bag when her daughter was born. Her vision was to create an easy-to-use, sustainable reusable garbage bag that could replace single-use bins liners for consumers and for business.

TOMbag has developed the world’s first reusable garbage bag. Made out of post-consumer waste using GRS certified recycled plastic, they’re extremely durable, easily washable and 100% waterproof. TOMbag products are designed to replace the 425+ billion single-use plastic garbage bags used by global households every single year (this number doesn’t even include garbage bags disposed of by commercial and industrial sectors).

For every product TOMbag sells, they plant a tree via a partnership with One Tree Planted. TOMbag reusable trash bag products are 100% circular and can be upcycled at the end of their life meaning that truly nothing goes to waste. TOMbag reusable bin liners are a great solution for home, businesses and hotels. They can be used for general waste, recycling and even compost.

The Problem with Single-use Garbage Bags

Countries around the world are banning single-use plastic shopping bags as they know they’re bad for the planet, emit carbon emissions and exacerbate climate change. But there’s a problem – they ignore the most commonly used single-use plastic bag. The garbage bag. It’s a double standard that simply does not make sense.

The most commonly used alternatives – biodegradable and compostable garbage bags – are marketed as sustainable alternatives to virgin plastic single-use trash bags, but this is pure greenwashing. Reputable organizations including Greenpeace and the Environmental Investigation Agency strongly recommend against usage of any type of bioplastics as it draws resources from agricultural land that would otherwise feed the growing population.

One of their latest reports on that topic can be downloaded here, please see page 20. Another recent report on the topic by Rethink Plastic can be accessed here – it explains why bioplastic will never solve the plastic pollution problem. In order to degrade biodegradable garbage bags require special conditions such as temperatures over 50C/120F that are not met when in landfill. Most of the compostable trash bags end up in landfills where they release methane – a greenhouse gas that is at least 28 times more potent than CO2. With climate change only getting worse, governments, businesses and consumers need to start thinking responsibly what kind of trash bags they are using.

TOMbag reusable garbage bags were created to solve the problem with single-use garbage bags bringing to the market one-of-a-kind reusable and circular solutions that can be used by households and businesses. TOMbag is working with a number of sustainability-minded businesses and hotel groups that are interested in piloting its reusable garbage bag solution.

Overall, it’s TOMbag up against the old guard of huge MNCs (P&G, etc) and big oil behind them that are betting on the growth of the single-use plastic market to make up for the reduction of gasoline sales due to EV market growth and adoption. If you’d like to contact the TOMbag team for a pilot or more information, you can email or contact them here.

TOMbag was selected as a finalist in the HATCH: Taronga Accelerator Program 2020 and is also a part of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation community.

To better understand how TOMbag reusable garbage bags work, watch this explainer video. Here’s a recent article from Fast Company on TOMbag that covers the huge environmental problem TOMbag is solving with their innovative scalable solution.

To learn more about TOMbag, visit the website at

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