We had the good fortune of connecting with Fiorella Rossel Borkert and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Fiorella, what’s the most important lesson your business/career has taught you?
The most important lesson I have learned is to stay humble, no matter how much you think you may know about a topic or a particular industry.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
We are the founders of The Bountiful Bag Upcycling Program, where we upcycle plastic waste from the beer and entertainment industries into fashionable, sturdy lifestyle products. These plastics are not recyclable in most of the USA and our mission is to rescue as much plastic as we can, and create awareness until a more complex recycling system is implemented in our country. We have collaborated with multiple breweries and organizations mostly in California. What I am most proud about, it to have the opportunity to have Vans Warped Tour as one of our biggest contributors, who gave us years of undisposed flags, tents, banners and stage walls to upcycle. I feel what sets us apart is that besides keeping all of this plastic from ending in a landfill, we also donate a percentage of our profits to the I Love A Clean San Diego nonprofit organization, as well as other charities chosen by our contributors including Keep A Breast, Unite The United, Embrace Race, Rady Children’s Hospital, and The Regional Parks Foundation. We design and manufacture everything by hand in San Marcos, CA, supporting our local economy, and we use deadstock fabrics from local curtain makers and upholsterers as linings. Finding all of these resources for “good trash” and testing the products have definitely been challenging and unconventional, and we are very grateful for all the support we have received from our community 🙂 The Bountiful Bag Upcycling Program brought a huge amount of education and plastic crisis awareness to my personal life. It has made me change my lifestyle and be more conscious about this global issue on a daily basis. I am proud to say I am almost zero waste in the bathroom, and that I work very hard to #refuse and #reuse ALL THE TIME!
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
There are so many hidden gems here in North County! I would definitely do a nice craft beer tour with good eats. There are many places worth your time, so we will definitely have to do this in several days, and with a designated driver 🙂 These are my must go-to places: Stave & Nail for a delicious brunch with beermosa flights! Then we start at the top of Escondido – stopping by Burgeon at The Oasis, to Wild Barrel, down to Lost Abbey. Merging onto Vista – to Helia, to Eppig, to Dogleg. If Harvest Kitchen, Thumbs Up! BBQ, The Flavor Mobile, Ron’s BBQ, Mexico City Cuisine or the Shrimp Bucket are the food trucks, we are in luck! We will definitely head over to Booze Bros -they usually have really good live music! Definitely going to Five Suits Brewing and get some Al Toque Peruvian food with their refreshing Peruvian Lager! And then will go to my new favorite spot, Misadventure Vodka in Vista – who is the first carbon negative distillery in the world by turning surplus baked goods into vodka! They normally have tours of their facility, so I am very excited to show my guests this amazing and innovative company. Plus, their cocktails are out of this world. Now going towards the coast, we definitely need to stop by Culver Beer in Carlsbad- not only their beer is amazing but their sandwiches are also incredible! In Oceanside, we love Black Plague, Bagby and Northern Pine! And the new satellite for Booze Bros, of course! If we get lucky, we may find Oceanside Kitchen Collaborative doing a pop-up with their incredible vegan “fish” tacos. Please keep these tacos under your radar, they are legit! Also, while on the coast, we must go eat at Panca Peruvian Cuisine! They have been a household favorite since they opened. From their ceviche, to the rotisserie chicken, to their empanadas and the sandwhiches – and please make sure to grab a couple alfajores on your way out!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There are two people, especially this year, that need to be recognized for the growth of this little business and for rolling with the punches with me at all times. I have major support from my sister Romi Rossel who is essential for this company to function. Romi is our co-founder, she is who gave this upcycling program a purpose by proposing to partner up with an environmental non-profit and donate a portion to our sales to them. She also built and maintains our website, manages our instagram; and takes our photos & videos, manages our marketing promotions and also runs all donations and assists with financials. And all of this while working a full time job as a Marketing Manager for another sustainable company, AND running her own freelance photography and digital photobooth rental business @romirosselmedia! I also receive major support from my husband Brian Borkert, who has helped build this since day 1. From product development, to quality control, to brainstorming and building displays and everything related with events. He has an amazing aesthetic eye, and he’s a pro at booth setups! He works in the electrical field full-time, while going to electrical engineering school and playing music with @soulsellerband! I can’t leave behind our very loving beer community- shout outs to Pink Boots Society and Mujeres Brew Club; to our sustainable community – Misadventure Distillery, Sonora Refillery, Santosha Nutrition, Reclaimed Goodness and Crimson Collective, as well as our awesome music buddies from the North County scene!
Romi Rossel Media Jenny Mann Photos Brian Borkert Candace Erie Romi Rossel Media