MUSKEGON, Mich. (WOOD) — A teenager from Muskegon created a company called Oshki that makes clothing with plastic waste found along the Great Lakes.
Jackson Riegler started Oshki in 2017. He was 17-years-old at the time. Riegler is now 19-years-old and going into his sophomore year at the University of Michigan.
The apparel company was founded out of Riegler’s passion for the Great Lakes. One that was inevitable, being Riegler grew up near Pere Marquette Beach in Muskegon.
Oshki currently sells two unisex t-shirts. One is offered in a light blue color, another in purple.
The t-shirts are made from plastic waste collected from the Great Lakes. The plastic waste is taken to local recycle companies, and eventually makes its way to North Carolina where it is processed into pellets of polyester yarn.
Riegler told 24 Hour News 8 every shirt made by Oshki has six plastic bottles recycled into it.
“It’s something that people take to heart even more because it’s much more like a sustainable product, I feel like,” said Riegler. “It’s been a really good response from the community.”
Oshki was able to get up-and-running through funding provided by optiMize.
OptiMize is an organization through University of Michigan, which aides student projects for positive change. The student organization funded Oshki $9,000 dollars to get the company going.
Riegler said the money also gave him clarity, and vision for a cleaner future.
“In the future I want to find new ways to use plastic waste that other companies have never done before, and really expand into other parts of the world,” said Riegler.
To shop Oshki apparel or read more about its mission, click here.