Jesse started Trash Panda in his garage in 2020, and the rest was history!
Head of Experience
Kelle is the one who keeps everyone happy, and keeps the wheels a-turnin here at TP.
Head of Marketing
Tom designs and writes things. Like the logos for each disc, the boxes they come in, and other neat stuff.
Head of Operations
If you've bought a disc from us, it has likely been through Kyle's hands!
Research & Development
Our disc designer extraordinaire who prototypes and designs our discs.
Jesse here, Trash Panda's Founder 👋
Today, we have an incredible team of people that keeps us at the forefront of sustainability in disc golf — but it wasn't always that way.
I started Trash Panda in 2020 out of my garage in Littleton, Colorado.. but the idea for Trash Panda really came in 2008.
As a passionate disc golfer, I started to wonder why more recycled plastics weren’t used in the sport—like what about a disc made from trash found in a landfill? or the ocean?!
So naturally… I did nothing.
For 12 years, I waited for someone else to do something.
Over that time, I became a content consumer (read: I watch way too much YouTube), I grew as a maker, I started to give a damn about our planet, and I became (even more) enamored with disc golf. The collision of these things slowly laid the groundwork for Trash Panda—which is now equal parts my passion and my pleasure.
From day one, Trash Panda has been—and will always be—a movement of people committed to growing the sport sustainably.
Welcome to the movement.
How we got here
In order to make disc from 100% recycled plastic, Jesse made a DIY injection machine in my garage. (Shoutout to his dad for the help!)
After months of problem solving, Jesse made the first disc made ever from 100% recycled plastic.
Did it feel good in the hand? No.
Did it mean I was on to something? Ohhh yeah.
From day one I wanted to make a video about how a disc is made, and now that we were a few prototypes in, I could. (Spoiler alert: it's been viewed more than 180k times.)
A couple of months later, we released minis made from 100% recycled plastic.
When all was said and done, we were only able to keep inventory on our site for just over a cumulative three days in 2021 🤯
After the craziness of 2021, we finally got back to prioritizing our disc prototypes and made our infamouse "Bubblegum Galaxy" disc.
After 5,000 minis individually made in the garage, we teamed up in early 2022 with a local manufacturer.
In the middle of 2022, the final prototype for what we know as the Inner Core was completed.
It was time for the big leagues so we upgraded from our $500 garage mold to a $50,000 industrial-grade mold for the Inner Core.
In preparation for launching our first disc, we officially moved out of the beloved garage and into our first warehouse!
A dream 2+ years in the making was officially realized when we released our first disc made from 100% recycled plastic to the world: the Inner Core.
With our first disc out in the market, we also launched the world's first disc recycling program. Since starting the program, we've recycled over 10k discs!
Due to the composition of baseline plastics, we had no idea how we would eventually release a sustainable baseline plastic early on..
But just before summer 2023, the perfect answer fell into our laps. (Hint: it has to do with TUMS.)
And now, our first midrange made from 100% recycled plastic is out in the world 😍