MISSOULA – After Keli Lake discovered her son was allergic to big brand soaps — from laundry detergent to toothpaste — she saw the need for a healthy and sustainable alternative.
Keli Lake founded Keligreen Soaps, a local soap production company with safety, accessibility and most importantly — no waste.
“Initially, it was about the internal ingredients,” Lake said. “How the revolution came to be, was…when I was offered a lot of money to have huge distribution.”
Keligreen soaps came out Lake’s personal need for safe detergent for her children and found success in markets across the state.
Lake turned down lots of money for a more sustainable model. She preferred a system where soap-buyers can reuse and refill their jugs at local businesses in over 25 locations in western Montana.
Lake says at this point her number one priority is to produce as little waste as possible.
“The agenda is the Earth and it’s our environment and the local economy,” Lake said. “You know, everyone is talking…about the [Gross National Product] being up. But what people really feel is their local economy, you know, wages and the environment locally, within your own neighborhood.”
Keligreen soaps aims to be plastic free by 2020.
Reporting by Donal Lakatua for MTN News