Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Elgin Plastix Inc. Helping Elgin to Recycle

Attention, owners of agricultural businesses in Elgin County! If you have any plastic waste products, such as old trays or containers, there’s a company in Aylmer that would like to buy them for recycling.

The County’s newest green business is called Elgin Plastix Inc., and it is looking for sources of plastic products that can be ground into little pellets and resold. Within a year, the company expects to be recycling cardboard and plastic film as well.

Eric Bartlett is president of Elgin Plastix and also manager of the Elgin Innovation Centre in Aylmer. That’s where the recycling company opened its doors in October 2011. It is one of 10 businesses that have been attracted to locate in the Innovation Centre since March 2010.

Bartlett, who recently moved to Aylmer from London, is one of four owners of the company. The others are Jack Baribeau of Dorchester, John Burkes of Springfield and Richard Phillips of London. Elgin Plastix is part of Elgin County’s growing industrial sector of energy and environmental companies, which are setting examples for combating reliance on oil and reducing the effects of climate change.

The machinery used by Elgin Plastix can grind up to 5,000 pounds of hard plastic per hour, like lawn chairs, plastic skids and starter trays from greenhouses– that would otherwise go to landfill sites. The plastic is reduced to small pellets and trucked to commodity depots, which resell them to manufacturers.

Bartlett says Elgin Plastix is looking to expand by finding more kinds of materials, and combinations of materials, to recycle.

"We are trying to find innovative ways of recycling different streams of plastics," he says. "We have taken in truckloads of mixed materials and found that we can process 80 per cent of them in a way that is useful."

Elgin County is an advantageous location for a green business like Elgin Plastix, Bartlett says, partly because operating costs are relatively low and partly because the large agriculture industry is a good source of recyclable products.

"If agriculture businesses have clean jugs and large containers made of polyethylene or polypropylene, we can take them.

Any businesses interested to work with Elgin Plastix to find green solutions for waste management can contact Eric Bartlett at 226-448-9101 or

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Parade of Elephants Comes to Tourism Office

The Parade of Elephants, a traveling art exhibit, is on display at the Elgin County Economic Development and Tourism office until February 28, 2013.

This public art initiative was launched by the St. Thomas-Elgin Public Art Centre in conjunction with the Elgin Arts Trail and its members. The exhibit is designed to generate interest in the local arts community and promote awareness about Elgin artists, galleries and studios featured on the Elgin Arts Trail.

"We are pleased to have the exhibit here at the Elgin County Tourism office," said Tourism Development Coordinator Kathryn Russell. "We encourage the public to come and see the elephants, meet the Elgin County staff and pick up an Elgin Arts Trail Guide."

The exhibit features papier maché elephants that are approximately 1.5 x 1.5 feet in size. Each elephant is uniquely decorated and reflects the artist who created it. The elephants pay homage to Jumbo, the African Elephant and star of the Barnum and Bailey circus that met his untimely end in St. Thomas in 1885.

Throughout 2013 the elephants will travel to different locations on the Elgin Arts Trail with a new elephant being created and added to the parade at each location. The exhibit will travel around Elgin County and St. Thomas until August 24, 2013 when it will end its journey at the St. Thomas Elgin-Public Art Centre. The elephants will then be displayed at the Art Centre and the public will be invited to view them at a reception with all the artists in attendance.

The Elgin County Tourism office is located at 450 Sunset Dr., St. Thomas and is open Monday – Friday 8:30 am – 4:30 pm. For more information on the Parade of Elephants and a copy of the Parade of Elephants Tour Map, please visit or call (519) 631-1460 ext. 168.

Monday, 11 February 2013

Elgin County Takes Home Marketing Award

Elgin County Economic Development has received an Economic Developers Council of Ontario award in recognition of the combined 2012 Savour Elgin/Elgin Arts Trail Guide. The award was presented to Elgin County on February 7 at an event held at the London Convention Centre. In addition Elgin County received honourable mention for the Elgin County Living Television Series on Rogers TV and the ElginLicious Marketing Campaign.

"It is an honour for Elgin County to be recognized amongst our provincial peers," said Elgin County Warden Cameron McWilliam. "It is evidence of the Economic Development department’s commitment to the promotion, growth and support of our business community."

The guide was developed in conjunction with marketing firm Yfactor and Elgin Arts Trail partners the Elgin Business Resource Centre and the St. Thomas – Elgin Public Art Centre. The guide takes residents and visitors on a journey to some of the area’s best restaurants, farmers’ markets and wineries as well as the area’s finest art galleries, studios and artisan craft locations.

2012 marked the third season of the highly successful Savour Elgin Culinary Trail and the second season of the award winning Elgin Arts Trail. It was evident that Savour Elgin and the Elgin Arts Trail have similar audiences so in 2012 the decision was made to combine the two guides into one to allow for increased cross promotion.

For a copy of the combined 2012 Savour Elgin/Elgin Arts Trail visit, or call (519) 631-1460 ext. 168.

(Left to right: Elgin County Warden, Cameron McWilliam; Tourism Development Coordinator, Kathryn Russell; Economic Development General Manager, Alan Smith; Business Development Coordinator, Kate Burns; 2012 EDCO President Robert Brindley.)