Several teams of Young Enterprise Scheme participants have put their products to the test at Nelson Market.
The secondary students had a range of wares for sale including rimu cufflinks, high-protein sauce and bamboo toothbrushes.
Eilish van Zeist and Becky Richards, from a Nelson College for Girls team, were selling their hand-painted bamboo toothbrushes for $3.50 each or two for $6 under their Eco Smilez brand. They also had unpainted brushes on offer.
The designs were applied using non-toxic paint followed by a waterproof covering.
Sustainability was a major focus for the team so fast-growing bamboo appealed as did the ability to compost most of the product once it was used.
Becky said after the bristles were cut off a used toothbrush, it could be put in the compost, paint and waterproof coating included.
The sustainability of the product also appealed to the team's target market – the Generation Z cohort.
"People our age are more into that kind of thing," Eilish said.
The team had a positive response to their toothbrushes at school, with fellow students buying the product, often for their parents as well.
A team from Nayland College called the Seven 13s had a vegan, high-protein sauce on sale that was also gluten and dairy free.
Team member Ella Holmes said the product, called Supa Sauce, was made by a chef in a commercial kitchen, then bottled by the team in the commercial kitchen at school.
As well as Nelson Market, the team members had sold their sauce at Isel Market and a school open night.
"We've had lots of orders," Holmes said.
The Seven 13s were also in talks with a nationwide retailer.
Another team with retail links was Rimu Revival from Nelson College, which had rimu cufflinks for sale at Nelson Tailors Menswear.
"They're going really well," said team member James Clifford.
The team of five fashioned the cufflinks from pieces of rimu that had been discarded during the renovation of a heritage home.
"It's a unique way to integrate [the wood] into men's fashion and we're all into making things," Clifford said.
The cufflinks included a splash of navy blue, deep red or honey gold via the addition of dye to the resin.
Young Enterprise Scheme regional co-ordinator Amanda Kane said there were 41 teams of students involved with the scheme this year in the Nelson-Marlborough region. Selling their products at a trade fair or market day was one of the challenges for the participants who were in years 12 and 13.
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