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Mr. Ellie Pooh

Updated on June 4, 2012
Notebooks by Mr. Ellie Pooh
Notebooks by Mr. Ellie Pooh

What do you think the beautiful notebooks to the right are made from? Is it ordinary paper? Recycled paper maybe? Not exactly. It's made from recycled - are you ready - elephant poop.

It looks kind of nice, doesn't it? If you didn't know what it was made of, would you think, hey, I'll write on that! Knowing that it's made from poop, would you still consider buying it?

Here's the really cool thing about the paper and the company that makes it. Mr. Ellie Pooh , a New York based company, is doing great things for the people of Sri Lanka and for the dwindling elephant population there. The elephants are being killed, not by poachers for their tusks, not for their meat or hides, but by angry farmers. The elephants are interfering with agriculture. Their roaming space continues to shrink and they are getting in the way of farming.

The Story of Mr.Ellie Pooh

Nobody likes a herd of stray elephants pooping on their front lawn...or back field. Clean up is a major, nasty task and well, it's not great for the crops. So Mr. Ellie Pooh, found a solution that allows the elephants do their business and makes the farmers happy.

The elephant needs to become an economic asset to the people of Sri Lanka. So what can an elephant bring to the table? The average elephant produces around 500lbs. of waste per day. Elephant dung is primarily cellulose, because they are vegetarians. It can be cleaned and processed into a linen quality paper for use in notebooks, greeting cards and craft project paper.

Now jobs are hard to come by these days, but would you want to be the collector of the materials for this paper? I'm sure there are worse jobs, though I can't think of any at this very moment. Still, this new industry in Sri Lanka is creating fair paying jobs with a completely green company.

This paper may not be the complete solution to the clash between farmers and elephants in Sri Lanka, but it is making some progress in protecting elephants by giving them economic value.

Want to try out some paper from Mr. Ellie Pooh? It is available at many zoo gift shops. I spotted it at Connecticut's own Beardsley Zoo and had the pleasure of speaking with a representative from Mr. Ellie Pooh at the Bronx Zoo’s recent Earth Day celebration. After viewing their line of products, I have to admit: I am sold! The paper, notebooks and scrapbooks are truly lovely. My 9-year-old daughter brought some to school and had fun sharing what she had learned with her class and letting everyone get a “feel” of the poop paper. Of course, they had to smell it too, but found there was no foul odor to be detected.

If you would like to support the efforts of Mr. Ellie Pooh, check out their website for a buyers guide and directory of stores that carry their products.


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    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 8 years ago from Connecticut

      C.C. Riter, I agree - cow patties are to be avoided at all costs!

      The entire process is eco-friendly, so you a probably right about the straining with water. Thanks for reading!

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 8 years ago from Connecticut

      Packerpat - that's a good question and I think the answer is yes, in some cases. Elephants have the advantage of producing large volume. :) I have also read that sheep poop is being used in the UK for not only paper...but car air fresheners. Imagine that! That is a topic for another hub, for sure! :)

    • profile image

      C. C. Riter 8 years ago

      Ephalant poo isn't near as bad a cow patties. Interesting hub here. I reckon they just strain it very well with water to get the fiber for it. I wouldn't do it but the paper would be OK with me. thanks for the info

    • packerpack profile image

      Om Prakash Singh 8 years ago from India, Calcutta

      I did not have even the slightest idea about this. I knew recycled papers are made from used papers, bamboos, sugar cane residue, grass but ever thought that elephant's dug can be used for the same purpose. Great for environment I must say and I really liked as I am an environmentalist. In-fact we all must use such recycled papers.

      However there is one question, if elephant's poop can be used for paper making because it is vegetarian so could be the case with other vegetarian animals too

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 8 years ago from Connecticut

      Hi Brad - yes, there are worse jobs I suppose! I like the way this company is creating solutions to the type of issues that often get overlooked from a business perspective.

      Hi James - this is not a prank - I promise! And Mr. Ellie Pooh is an entirely green operation. I can see why you wouldn't want to use their products, but they really ar beautiful. I am not an affiliate or trying to sell anything. I just like their stuff!

      Thanks Christa and thelesleyshow! Glad you enjoyed this!

    • thelesleyshow profile image

      TheLesleyShow 8 years ago from US

      Primo idea! THUMBS UP!

    • Christa Dovel profile image

      Christa Dovel 8 years ago from The Rocky Mountains, North America

      It is a very interesting idea. I like that it is made without chemicals.

    • James A Watkins profile image

      James A Watkins 8 years ago from Chicago

      Assuming this is not a prank—it is surprising and interesting. I'm not sure if it's green, without seeing it. I am sad to report, in answer to your question would I use poopy paper, no. I just can't bring myself to do it. I wish I could. But I can't.

    • brad4l profile image

      brad4l 8 years ago from USA

      I never would have guessed the paper was made from elephant pooh.

      It is neat that they are taking measures to help protect the elephants. I hope it works. I know it must be frustrating to the farmers, especially when you consider all the hungry people in Africa, but it is a shame to kill the elephants.

      Personally, I can think of more than a couple of jobs that I think are a little dirtier than elephant pooh collector :)