Orillia is now the home of an online retailer that sells eco-friendly personal care and kitchen accessory products meant to help people attain a zero-waste lifestyle.
Dew South is a business that was created by 33-year-old Ukrainian native Iryna Rosetti Pacheco.
“We sell solid shampoo bars, conditioners, bamboo toothbrushes, compostable kitchen accessories like sponges, paper towels, and things like that,” she explained.
The business was launched in November of 2019 but started slow due to the COVID-19 pandemic. When Rosetti Pacheco ramped up efforts to make her business successful last summer, her products started becoming more popular.
“It took a good seven months of hard work,” she explained.
“On one hand, my business is still considered a new niche and people are reaching out and are interested, but at the same time, we aren’t the first ones in this industry. So, we had to make room between us and the competition.”
Rosetti Pacheco decided to focus on the fun side of living a waste reduction lifestyle in order to appeal to potential customers.
“I focused on the fact that a zero-waste lifestyle doesn’t have to be boring,” she said.
“I think the misconception out there is you have to sacrifice a lot and purchase things that are difficult to work with. So, my idea was to show people that creating less waste could be fun.”
Dew South carries products that are a luxury and are beautiful, but yet, they help customers waste less, she explained.
Before owning a retail store, Rosetti Pacheco spent a decade as a research chemist who took environmental health and safety industrial chemicals and made them more environmentally friendly.
“It kind of bursted me with ideas and I wanted to create something of my own eventually. So, after 10 years, I finally decided to try and put my own imprint out there,” she explained.
Rosetti Pacheco moved from Ukraine to Canada when she was just 13, and after living in Toronto and Alliston for most of her life in Canada, she decided to move permanently to Orillia last month.
“It was just perfect for me, it was close to the beaches, close to downtown which I’ve fallen in love with, and I love the sense of community here,” she said.
Rosetti Pacheco is working on getting in contact with locally owned Orillia businesses to get Dew South products into local retail stores by the end of the year.
“I am a small business, and I truly understand what it’s like to own a small business. So, I’m all about supporting small businesses as well,” she said.
“I want to offer unique products that aren’t sold anywhere else to specifically small local businesses. I think that would make for a good partnership.”
Rosetti Pacheco is hopeful that making her products available online and in Orillia shops will help create more conversation in local households about living a waste-free lifestyle.
“When people think of zero waste lifestyle, I want them to think of Dew South. I want to make this kind of lifestyle easily accessible to anybody and I want to make it very well known that ideas are still on the rise,” she said.
"I want to be a part of the movement and a part of the voice that teaches people how to waste less.”
Dew South will be launching a new Canadian-made multi-purpose cleaner on July 27, and you will be able to find it and other Dew South products here.