Mary Ellen Dowd

Our discussion today is with Mary Ellen Dowd, a Communications Associate at TerraCycle, Inc. TerraCycle is an international leader in innovative sustainability solutions, creating and operating first-of-their-kind platforms in recycling, recycled materials, and reuse. Across 21 countries, TerraCycle is on a mission to rethink waste and develop practical solutions for today’s complex waste challenges. The company engages an expansive multi-stakeholder community across a wide range of accessible programs, from Fortune 500 companies to schools and individuals, and has raised over $44 million for schools and nonprofits since its founding more than 15 years ago.

In this conversation, we talk about how the Terracycle services can bring our home recycling practices to a new level. To learn more about TerraCycle and join them on their journey to move the world from a linear economy to a circular one, please visit

Listen to the episode on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Podchaser, Podtail, Youtube, or on your favorite podcast platform.

Topics Covered:

  • Use promo code gooddirt15 for 15% off at Nui Organics
  • Mary Ellen's background
  • What is Terra Cycle and how they take recycling to the next level
  • The Zero-Waste Box
  • Free Recycling Programs
  • Recycling is a process that is governed by economics
  • What happens to the contents of Zero-Waste Box 
  • Bausch and Lomb partnership
  • Origins of Terracycle
  • The value of trash
  • Eliminating the idea of waste
  • The Loop circular shopping system, or the modern milkman
  • How the good dirt connects to waste and the economy
  •  How can the zero-waste box be more accessible to the individual? 
  • What happens when the Zero Waste Box is returned to Terracycle
  • How Terracycle addresses microplastics 
  • The problem of cigarette butts
  •  Actionable steps for individuals
  • "Wish-cycling"
  • How Terracycle addresses scale


Connect with Terracycle:


This episode is sponsored by Nui Organics - Use code GoodDirt15 for 15% at


About Lady Farmer:


Original music by John Kingsley. The Good Dirt podcast is edited and engineered by Aleksandra van der Westhuizen and produced by Mary Ball. The Good Dirt is a part of the Connectd Podcasts Network.

Statements in this podcast have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not to be considered as medical or nutritional advice. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease, and should not be considered above the advice of your physician. Consult a medical professional when making dietary or lifestyle decisions that could affect your health and well-being.