On a mission to turn gorse into golf tees

By Koro Carman

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NZ $4,501 pledged


45 people pledged


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NZ $22,000 minimum target


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This campaign failed to reach its target by 29/07/2023 at 6:00 PM (NZST) and is now closed.

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About

On A Mission To Turn Gorse Into Golf Tees

Project 2023-06-19 12:16:27 +1200

Just a couple of golf mates who came up with an outrageous idea ...

Green Waste Products NZ is a Pre-Seed Startup. The Founders, Koro and Vaughan are golf mates and hit out of both the Rawene and Kaikohe Golf Clubs. We are both pretty average golfers but are insanely competitive (at least Koro is, Vaughan is pretty chilled). You can only imagine, in fact you don't even want to imagine what that must look like. 

Koro has worked in Tourism & Hospitality for over 25 years. His work has ben focused on Environmental & Cultural Tourism Product Development. Koro co-founded the world reknown Footprints Waipoua tourism experience. When the borders closed Koro helped to deliver a 3 Week Tourism Programme to Maori youth in conjunction with MSD. Koro currently works in the Wellness, Youth Development and Education sectors. Koro lives between Kerikeri and Rawene in the Hokianga where he grew up.

Vaughan is a Potter/Ceramicist and Artist who has a background in Management, Sales & Marketing and Manufacturing. Vaughan considers his time working as a support worker in the disability sector as a huge privilege. Vaughan has been involved in a couple of groundbreaking startups including developing a range of organic head lice products and helping to develop the world's first organic weed spray where he was responsible for research, delivering field trials and leading out the promotions and sales. Vaughan lives in Omapere in the Hokianga.

We are both passionate Planet Ambassadors.  

That's Vaughan on the left looking like a golfer and Koro on the right thinking how much Vaughan looks like a golfer.

The back story ...

One day in October of 2021, I (Koro) was walking up the 13th fairway at the Kaikohe Golf Club rummaging through my pocket for a kurol (one of those throat lollies). There’s a heck of lot of stuff in there, so I whip everything out and when I open my hand, I am totally gobsmacked to see a palm full of plastic and wooden golf tees and there in the middle of it all, my kurol also wrapped in plastic. Just out of interest that is Koro's hand. I wonder if anyone reading this needs a hand model?

 

 

That was the moment that I started thinking about how can we remove plastic from the game of golf and what do we replace it with? After much deliberation and a chance conversation, we settled on turning gorse into golf tees. 

Our Vision

Is to help heal the planet and humanity by removing as much plastic from the game of golf and gorse from the ecosystem as we can.

If it’s made from plastic, we want to replace it with a New Zealand pest plant alternative.

We describe our vision as a Planet Ambassador journey and we aspire to inspire and grow future Planet Ambassadors.

Here's our collective problem ...

Every year the world makes 3.5 billion golf tees, primarily from plastic and gorse covers 1.7 million acres or 5% of Aotearoa, that's 13 Auckland's, and every year we spend over $20 million dollars a year trying to control it.

Plastic and gorse are a human, environmental and economic nightmare. We want to utilise this underutilised natural resource to create ‘new green’ waste to value opportunities. We believe it’s also an opportunity to encourage a new sense of hope and purpose.

What have we done so far?

We are a 2023 Kokiri Maori Business Startup Accelerator participant.

We were involved in the Northland Inc 2022 'The Pick' Business Idea Competition.

We have had our prototypes tested over a 2 month period by 20 golfers.

We have received amazing feedback and we have early adopters.

We have had positive engagement with Callaghan Innovation and Scion Research.

We have had positive engagement with the NZ Golf sector and Private Landowners. 

We have a very experienced Advisory Board who are leaders in the NZ Golf, Tech & Innovation and Enterprise & Research sectors.

 

“This is a fantastic idea and solution! What a great way to turn a pest plant into something that people can use to enjoy their favourite sport while supporting our environment. Added to that, the Tees won’t damage mowers as much as plastic ones and will bio-degrade which is the perfect solution for all golf courses.” 

 

Spencer Cooper Superintendent – Remuera Golf Club

 

 

 

The Product & Proposition

We make a niche, premium, lovingly and individually hand-crafted golf tee made from the stems and offshoots of the gorse plant.

We are the only golf tee in the world made from gorse.

Our tees have a slightly larger body so are more durable and won't break as easily as a traditional wooden tee. 

We are familiar off the club face just like a traditional wooden tee which just means for non-golfers that we are no different to a wooden tee except that our tees are made from gorse so are totally different!

We plan to scent our tees to help calm and energise golfers because it’s all about finding an edge.

The Business Model

Because we are a handcrafted product our numbers in Year 1 are not high. I suppose this aligns to our premium proposition. We will be making 120 tees a month for the next 12 months. That’s 20 packets of 6 tees in a packet. Each packet will also include an ornamental tee made from recycled kauri. If gorse is cool then recycled kauri is ‘way cool’.

The Long-Term Production Goal

The long-term goal is to use the whole plant (needles, flowers, roots) to make tees. This will require us to explore the injection moulding manufacturing process and identify potential natural binding agents. We have engaged Callaghan Innovation to prepare a Feasibility Study to help us explore and identify opportunities in this space. This process will enable us to increase our production.

Our Road Map

Years 1 & 2

Build brand awareness and develop processes and systems. By the end of Year 1, we will have more than 100 customers who have bought our tees at least once following their initial purchase.

Years 3 & 4

Engage a manufacturing partner to increase production. By the end of Year 3, we will be selling more than 2500 tees per month and have agreements in place to manufacture up to 5,000 tees per month by the end of Year 4.

Year 5

Grow NZ market share and explore the global opportunity. In Year 5 we will manufacture 10,000 tees a month for the NZ market and explore the international opportunity.

Thank You!

Vaughan and I would like to sincerely thank you in advance for your support. We look forward to you jumping on board our Planet Ambassador journey and helping us to change our landscapes one gorse golf tee at a time.

 

Comments

Updates 24

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Iain Power you're the man bro

04/07/2023 at 8:05 AM

Thank you bro for supporting the kaupapa. Means alot. Just so you know I'm gonna beat you next year. Actually you know Vili should probably be our Number 1 but he can't speak English, doesn't have the mental game and to be honest he's just shit at golf. I let him play with me because he brings all the lollies and then he shouts everyone afterwards. Actually Vili and Wade are twins. Have a gorsome day bro. 

 

Thank you Claire.

03/07/2023 at 6:04 PM

Kia ora Claire. We really appreciate your pledge and for sharing our kaupapa with your network. I just received this picture so I thought I would pop it up. This picture was taken after our pitch event on Friday. Thanks again. K&V 

Pairo

03/07/2023 at 5:44 PM

Thank you guys. Gorsemazing. Trying to come up with new words cause the other ones are getting worn out. Appreciate you both. K&V

You need to pledge to see this update.

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What a blast. We went live with our campaign last Thursday at our Kokiri pitch in Hamilton.

03/07/2023 at 6:44 AM

Only feels like yesterday and not last Thursday but we made it and we delivered it. A big shout out to Charlotte and Aunty Saara for helping Vaughan and I pull this together. And a massive shout out to all our family, friends and supporters who have pledged a collective $2260.00 so far. Only $19,740.00 to go. Onwards and upwards. Vaughan and I really appreciate all of your support and together we look forward to changing our landscapes one gorse golf tee at a time. 

    Pledgers 45

    Laura Cibilich
    29/07/2023 at 2:35pm
    Ann-Maree
    27/07/2023 at 5:27pm

    "Good luck Lil bro!!"

    Sarah Colcord
    27/07/2023 at 1:48pm

    "Let's get behind this awesome kaupapa"

    Saara
    24/07/2023 at 11:01am

    "I like round numbers and keeping the momentum going! 5 DAYS TO GO! Sending Aunty Aroha!"

    Joe Slater
    22/07/2023 at 2:01pm

    "Awesome stuff, all the best"

    Sivina Jacobs Harawira
    22/07/2023 at 8:40am

    "Awesome idea and can’t wait to see it come to fruition!"

    Anna Guenther
    22/07/2023 at 6:34am
    Kara-Leah Grant
    20/07/2023 at 3:15pm

    "Love your attitude. This seems like a no-brainer. May the rest of the cash show up with ease. You're doing something awesome. "

    Kitana
    20/07/2023 at 10:05am

    "Shout out to me LOL "

    Cheyenne
    20/07/2023 at 9:59am
    Phil Dominick
    19/07/2023 at 1:52pm

    "Love your work. Keep saving our kainga!"

    Kyle Brown
    18/07/2023 at 9:02am
    Terry Shubkin
    17/07/2023 at 8:29am

    "Love your mahi."

    [email protected]
    15/07/2023 at 2:07pm

    "Ka pai tō mahi koro "

    Sharee Frances Wilkinson
    11/07/2023 at 10:23pm

    "Can't wait to be back home with you guys living the sustainable dream and helping our people thrive ! Ka mau te wehi e hoa mā. Mauri tū, mauri ora ! "

    Jan Bain
    09/07/2023 at 9:42am
    Owen
    08/07/2023 at 9:14pm
    Briar
    07/07/2023 at 9:16pm
    Husain A
    06/07/2023 at 7:57am

    "Go well Koro!"

    Janette
    05/07/2023 at 9:05pm

    "Keep the change 😂"

    Cheyenne
    05/07/2023 at 8:31pm

    "Lesshgoooo"

    Jes Sweetman
    05/07/2023 at 8:13am

    "Love your mahi kōrua! Kia kaha, kia maia, kia manawanui"

    Kate
    04/07/2023 at 7:07pm

    "Good luck guys, awesome idea! "

    Kerry Topp
    04/07/2023 at 3:39pm

    "Kia kaha e hoa mā. Go hard. Kaua e mate wheke mate ururoa!"

    Greg Whitham
    04/07/2023 at 2:39pm

    "Awesome kaupapa. Love it when the simple ideas get the right someone in behind them to make it happen!"

    Iain Power
    04/07/2023 at 7:28am

    "Good luck boys"

    Amokura Panoho
    03/07/2023 at 7:00pm
    Claire McGowan
    03/07/2023 at 4:05pm
    Anonymous pledger
    03/07/2023 at 11:15am

    "Yeeeeaaaa the boys!!!! Let's make it happen"

    Raquel Harris
    02/07/2023 at 9:01pm

    "Tautoko your kaupapa. We are so grateful to have met you guys and seen your journey. Forever supporters! Lee and Raquel"

    Followers 1

    Followers of On a mission to turn gorse into golf tees

    On A Mission To Turn Gorse Into Golf Tees

    Project 2023-06-19 12:16:27 +1200

    Just a couple of golf mates who came up with an outrageous idea ...

    Green Waste Products NZ is a Pre-Seed Startup. The Founders, Koro and Vaughan are golf mates and hit out of both the Rawene and Kaikohe Golf Clubs. We are both pretty average golfers but are insanely competitive (at least Koro is, Vaughan is pretty chilled). You can only imagine, in fact you don't even want to imagine what that must look like. 

    Koro has worked in Tourism & Hospitality for over 25 years. His work has ben focused on Environmental & Cultural Tourism Product Development. Koro co-founded the world reknown Footprints Waipoua tourism experience. When the borders closed Koro helped to deliver a 3 Week Tourism Programme to Maori youth in conjunction with MSD. Koro currently works in the Wellness, Youth Development and Education sectors. Koro lives between Kerikeri and Rawene in the Hokianga where he grew up.

    Vaughan is a Potter/Ceramicist and Artist who has a background in Management, Sales & Marketing and Manufacturing. Vaughan considers his time working as a support worker in the disability sector as a huge privilege. Vaughan has been involved in a couple of groundbreaking startups including developing a range of organic head lice products and helping to develop the world's first organic weed spray where he was responsible for research, delivering field trials and leading out the promotions and sales. Vaughan lives in Omapere in the Hokianga.

    We are both passionate Planet Ambassadors.  

    That's Vaughan on the left looking like a golfer and Koro on the right thinking how much Vaughan looks like a golfer.

    The back story ...

    One day in October of 2021, I (Koro) was walking up the 13th fairway at the Kaikohe Golf Club rummaging through my pocket for a kurol (one of those throat lollies). There’s a heck of lot of stuff in there, so I whip everything out and when I open my hand, I am totally gobsmacked to see a palm full of plastic and wooden golf tees and there in the middle of it all, my kurol also wrapped in plastic. Just out of interest that is Koro's hand. I wonder if anyone reading this needs a hand model?

     

     

    That was the moment that I started thinking about how can we remove plastic from the game of golf and what do we replace it with? After much deliberation and a chance conversation, we settled on turning gorse into golf tees. 

    Our Vision

    Is to help heal the planet and humanity by removing as much plastic from the game of golf and gorse from the ecosystem as we can.

    If it’s made from plastic, we want to replace it with a New Zealand pest plant alternative.

    We describe our vision as a Planet Ambassador journey and we aspire to inspire and grow future Planet Ambassadors.

    Here's our collective problem ...

    Every year the world makes 3.5 billion golf tees, primarily from plastic and gorse covers 1.7 million acres or 5% of Aotearoa, that's 13 Auckland's, and every year we spend over $20 million dollars a year trying to control it.

    Plastic and gorse are a human, environmental and economic nightmare. We want to utilise this underutilised natural resource to create ‘new green’ waste to value opportunities. We believe it’s also an opportunity to encourage a new sense of hope and purpose.

    What have we done so far?

    We are a 2023 Kokiri Maori Business Startup Accelerator participant.

    We were involved in the Northland Inc 2022 'The Pick' Business Idea Competition.

    We have had our prototypes tested over a 2 month period by 20 golfers.

    We have received amazing feedback and we have early adopters.

    We have had positive engagement with Callaghan Innovation and Scion Research.

    We have had positive engagement with the NZ Golf sector and Private Landowners. 

    We have a very experienced Advisory Board who are leaders in the NZ Golf, Tech & Innovation and Enterprise & Research sectors.

     

    “This is a fantastic idea and solution! What a great way to turn a pest plant into something that people can use to enjoy their favourite sport while supporting our environment. Added to that, the Tees won’t damage mowers as much as plastic ones and will bio-degrade which is the perfect solution for all golf courses.” 

     

    Spencer Cooper Superintendent – Remuera Golf Club

     

     

     

    The Product & Proposition

    We make a niche, premium, lovingly and individually hand-crafted golf tee made from the stems and offshoots of the gorse plant.

    We are the only golf tee in the world made from gorse.

    Our tees have a slightly larger body so are more durable and won't break as easily as a traditional wooden tee. 

    We are familiar off the club face just like a traditional wooden tee which just means for non-golfers that we are no different to a wooden tee except that our tees are made from gorse so are totally different!

    We plan to scent our tees to help calm and energise golfers because it’s all about finding an edge.

    The Business Model

    Because we are a handcrafted product our numbers in Year 1 are not high. I suppose this aligns to our premium proposition. We will be making 120 tees a month for the next 12 months. That’s 20 packets of 6 tees in a packet. Each packet will also include an ornamental tee made from recycled kauri. If gorse is cool then recycled kauri is ‘way cool’.

    The Long-Term Production Goal

    The long-term goal is to use the whole plant (needles, flowers, roots) to make tees. This will require us to explore the injection moulding manufacturing process and identify potential natural binding agents. We have engaged Callaghan Innovation to prepare a Feasibility Study to help us explore and identify opportunities in this space. This process will enable us to increase our production.

    Our Road Map

    Years 1 & 2

    Build brand awareness and develop processes and systems. By the end of Year 1, we will have more than 100 customers who have bought our tees at least once following their initial purchase.

    Years 3 & 4

    Engage a manufacturing partner to increase production. By the end of Year 3, we will be selling more than 2500 tees per month and have agreements in place to manufacture up to 5,000 tees per month by the end of Year 4.

    Year 5

    Grow NZ market share and explore the global opportunity. In Year 5 we will manufacture 10,000 tees a month for the NZ market and explore the international opportunity.

    Thank You!

    Vaughan and I would like to sincerely thank you in advance for your support. We look forward to you jumping on board our Planet Ambassador journey and helping us to change our landscapes one gorse golf tee at a time.

     

    Comments

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    Iain Power you're the man bro

    04/07/2023 at 8:05 AM

    Thank you bro for supporting the kaupapa. Means alot. Just so you know I'm gonna beat you next year. Actually you know Vili should probably be our Number 1 but he can't speak English, doesn't have the mental game and to be honest he's just shit at golf. I let him play with me because he brings all the lollies and then he shouts everyone afterwards. Actually Vili and Wade are twins. Have a gorsome day bro. 

     

    Thank you Claire.

    03/07/2023 at 6:04 PM

    Kia ora Claire. We really appreciate your pledge and for sharing our kaupapa with your network. I just received this picture so I thought I would pop it up. This picture was taken after our pitch event on Friday. Thanks again. K&V 

    Pairo

    03/07/2023 at 5:44 PM

    Thank you guys. Gorsemazing. Trying to come up with new words cause the other ones are getting worn out. Appreciate you both. K&V

    You need to pledge to see this update.

    You need to pledge to see this update.

    You need to pledge to see this update.

    You need to pledge to see this update.

    What a blast. We went live with our campaign last Thursday at our Kokiri pitch in Hamilton.

    03/07/2023 at 6:44 AM

    Only feels like yesterday and not last Thursday but we made it and we delivered it. A big shout out to Charlotte and Aunty Saara for helping Vaughan and I pull this together. And a massive shout out to all our family, friends and supporters who have pledged a collective $2260.00 so far. Only $19,740.00 to go. Onwards and upwards. Vaughan and I really appreciate all of your support and together we look forward to changing our landscapes one gorse golf tee at a time. 

      Laura Cibilich
      29/07/2023 at 2:35pm
      Ann-Maree
      27/07/2023 at 5:27pm

      "Good luck Lil bro!!"

      Sarah Colcord
      27/07/2023 at 1:48pm

      "Let's get behind this awesome kaupapa"

      Saara
      24/07/2023 at 11:01am

      "I like round numbers and keeping the momentum going! 5 DAYS TO GO! Sending Aunty Aroha!"

      Joe Slater
      22/07/2023 at 2:01pm

      "Awesome stuff, all the best"

      Sivina Jacobs Harawira
      22/07/2023 at 8:40am

      "Awesome idea and can’t wait to see it come to fruition!"

      Anna Guenther
      22/07/2023 at 6:34am
      Kara-Leah Grant
      20/07/2023 at 3:15pm

      "Love your attitude. This seems like a no-brainer. May the rest of the cash show up with ease. You're doing something awesome. "

      Kitana
      20/07/2023 at 10:05am

      "Shout out to me LOL "

      Cheyenne
      20/07/2023 at 9:59am
      Phil Dominick
      19/07/2023 at 1:52pm

      "Love your work. Keep saving our kainga!"

      Kyle Brown
      18/07/2023 at 9:02am
      Terry Shubkin
      17/07/2023 at 8:29am

      "Love your mahi."

      [email protected]
      15/07/2023 at 2:07pm

      "Ka pai tō mahi koro "

      Sharee Frances Wilkinson
      11/07/2023 at 10:23pm

      "Can't wait to be back home with you guys living the sustainable dream and helping our people thrive ! Ka mau te wehi e hoa mā. Mauri tū, mauri ora ! "

      Jan Bain
      09/07/2023 at 9:42am
      Owen
      08/07/2023 at 9:14pm
      Briar
      07/07/2023 at 9:16pm
      Husain A
      06/07/2023 at 7:57am

      "Go well Koro!"

      Janette
      05/07/2023 at 9:05pm

      "Keep the change 😂"

      Cheyenne
      05/07/2023 at 8:31pm

      "Lesshgoooo"

      Jes Sweetman
      05/07/2023 at 8:13am

      "Love your mahi kōrua! Kia kaha, kia maia, kia manawanui"

      Kate
      04/07/2023 at 7:07pm

      "Good luck guys, awesome idea! "

      Kerry Topp
      04/07/2023 at 3:39pm

      "Kia kaha e hoa mā. Go hard. Kaua e mate wheke mate ururoa!"

      Greg Whitham
      04/07/2023 at 2:39pm

      "Awesome kaupapa. Love it when the simple ideas get the right someone in behind them to make it happen!"

      Iain Power
      04/07/2023 at 7:28am

      "Good luck boys"

      Amokura Panoho
      03/07/2023 at 7:00pm
      Claire McGowan
      03/07/2023 at 4:05pm
      Anonymous pledger
      03/07/2023 at 11:15am

      "Yeeeeaaaa the boys!!!! Let's make it happen"

      Raquel Harris
      02/07/2023 at 9:01pm

      "Tautoko your kaupapa. We are so grateful to have met you guys and seen your journey. Forever supporters! Lee and Raquel"

      Followers of On a mission to turn gorse into golf tees

      This campaign was unsuccessful and finished on 29/07/2023 at 6:00 PM.
      A Social Media Thank You & Much Appreciated Acknowledgement.
      We Will Write Your Name In The Sand.
      A Personalised Video Thank You Message.
      Due To Popular Demand We Have Added 20 More Packets Of Gorse Golf Tees.
      A Packet Of Gorse Golf Tees.
      1 Hour Of Helping A Neighbour With A Chore.
      Play A Round Of Golf With Koro & Vaughan.
      A Day Volunteering On A Community Project Or With A Community Group.