Gabriel Yeung (Founder of HarmlessHK)

Welcome to the podcast, where I sit down with someone related to Hong Kong and share their relationship with the city, with you. In this episode I sit down with the founder of HarmlessHK, a small company that is making and selling a straw that is entirely made of paper. Now I know what you’re thinking, a paper straw is probably going to collapse after the first sip. Well Gabriel rated his straw as having a 2 hour ability to satisfy your consumption of liquids and I put that to the test without his knowledge. There is a youtube video I made in the show notes showing the outcome of that test. Spoilers, it passed.

Together we discuss why his straw is necessary when there are movements underway to remove ourselves from our use of single use items, his motivations for starting his company and how does Gabriel though his company hope to contribute towards helping the environment.

Before we begin, if you enjoy this podcast and many of its episodes, please don’t forget to give it a short review and rating on iTunes. Also if you’d like to support the podcast, consider the patreon which opens up other benefits and allows me to put more time into preparing and getting interesting guests for the podcast. Or just share it, on your timeline, you never know who else will be interested.

Having said all that, Thanks for listening, and Hello from Hong Kong.

Show Notes

YouTube version


Testing the straw

Hello From Hong Kong on Twitter

Hello From Hong Kong on Reddit

Raphaël De Ry (Zerowaste Store Owner)

Welcome to episode 28 with Raphael, the owner of a zero waste store called Edgar’s in Hong Kong.

Together we sit down and chat about zero waste, what it is and how to do it in while shopping and at home. As an aside, its basically about trying to buy things without creating any waste, with recycling NOT being the solution, for most people you have recycling and then normal waste. With zero wasters its about removing waste entirely if at all possible so that you throw less out and recycle less because recycling isn’t the whole answer to our environmental issues.

This does mean doing more work so the sake of conveince to purchase things without taking home various types of plastic and paper to just then dispose of. The convince isn’t there to wholly serve you either, its to the benefit of businesses and corporations who can manufacturer more stuff as easily and as cheaply as possible.

Coincidentally, I have just started a new podcast about helping others get into zero waste, the episodes are much shorter than what you’re used to here with hello from hong kong and if you want to save some money i of course recommend downloading it. Link is in the show notes.

By the way, the environmental bent that one would expect to have with such a podcast is kept to a minimum, the focus is on helping you save money by being more conscious of your spending habits. If you know you’re saving money by the end of the month following the suggestions and ideas, then that’s what’s important, the environment will benefit of course, but you’re not burdened with wondering about the outcomes of living a zero waste lifestyle when considering the environment, what I mean is, how do you know you have lessened your impact on the world at the end of the month if you went zero waste? You can’t really, all you can measure is whether your wallet is getting healthier and that’s what I focus on in the zero waste podcast.

Back to this episode however, we also learn what its like to run a store selling zero waste to people who may have never heard of it before. Its also very informative to hear from Raphaels point of view how he has to over come many of the obstacles with running such a store especially when customers don’t have the benefit of product labels and packaging to help them in their purchase. We also talk about practising zero waste in the home and some of the limitations of these new types of stores at their current stage of development.

That’s about it, I hope you enjoy this one as much as I did, after recording this particular episode Raphael did mention he’d be interested in more collabs and i would like him to make regular guest appearances on my new podcast, so if you enjoy his style, stay tuned for more.

Show Links

My Zerowaste podcast

Victoria and Jay (Retirees)

In this episode I sit down with some long time viewers of my Periscope channel. Two Californians who used to live here in Hong Kong way back in the 1970s. Together we talk about what life was like for them both while here, how they met, how much has Hong Kong changed and much more.

NOTE: I’m not wearing a mic, so my voice is lower than Victoria’s and Jay’s.