Customers warm to eco-friendly firelighter

Kilmington tennager James Wilson is blazing a trail with his new invention

A KILMINGTON teenager is blazing a trail in the business world - with a bright idea for lighting fires.

Seventeen-year-old James Wilson’s pioneering product is fuelled by natural rapeseed oil, rather than the more usual kerosene.

He got the idea after discovering how well the plant extract burned.

James’ family own the land on which the Cotswold Gold company grows rapeseed for use as cooking oil and salad dressings.

He discovered that the filters used to crush the rapeseed made for brilliant firelighters, as they are still soaked in the oil.

Seeing an opportunity he decided to purchase the filter mats – which are normally thrown out and market them as natural firelighters.

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James tested the product himself, and began giving them to friends and family to get feedback. The result was a big thumbs up.

The green-thinking teenager also looked to deign the

most cost effective and eco-friendly way to package the firelighters in packs of 24.

He said: “Kerosene firelighters waste a lot of packaging materials as they need to be individually wrapped as they are harmful to people and the environment. I wanted to use the least amount of packaging possible, and the packaging that is used can all be recycled. Tear and Light Firelighters are made from 100 per cent natural fibres and when the rapeseed oil burns, it is clean and odourless.

“Each packet contains 24 firelighters and all you have to do is partially rip one, and then set light to them - hence the name ‘Tear and Light Firelighters’.”

So far his product is on sale at Millers Farm Shop, Kilmington and Uplyme Stores andJames soon hopes to have more outlets.

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