The Quintero family: bottles of love and care.

Dianey Quintero, Novaventa entrepreneur, and her family found in the Botellas de Amor (Bottles of love) recycling program a way to take care of the planet that will inherit the younger members of the family.

“My aunts were the ones who started filling the bottles. I used to see them and ask: ‘What are you doing with those bottles?’ They said the purpose is to recycle waste and take care of the planet, so I started filling my bottles too,” tells Dianey Quintero, Novaventa entrepreneur. Bottles of love is a recycling and waste transformation campaign: the plastic containers that normally end up being thrown to the garbage can are filled with plastic and flexible waste, such as food wrappers, plastic bags, toothbrushes, for example. The foundation that leads this initiative –both of which share the same name– transforms the bottles into materials for the construction of structures and furniture, such as houses and children’s playgrounds.
“Everybody keeps the packages and wrappers to fill the bottles; I even bring the wrappers of the food I eat outside. I used to throw them away but I can’t do that anymore; I keep them in my purse and later I fill the bottles with them,” says Dianey. When she says “everybody,” she is talking about her family because filling these plastic containers is an activity that each family member has incorporated into their household routines with the certainty that disposing of their waste this way is a good method for taking care of the environment. “It becomes like part of your essence, because you know that we are running out of nature, that we are killing but also that we can help protecting it by doing things like this,” she says.

 

The vehicle used by Grupo Nutresa for delivering the orders made by Dianey as a Novaventa entrepreneur also picks up the bottles and transports them for their corresponding transformation carried out by the foundation in charge of that process. Thanks to this practical methodology, she has convinced more people to start filling plastic bottles: “I ask my friends: ‘what are you doing with the plastic bags?’ And they told me that they throw them away. So, I told them: ‘Let me tell you that Nutresa is picking up the bottles of love, that’s what they’re called, because they are used even for building houses. Fill the bottles with plastic, don’t be lazy that I will come and get them,’” tells Dianey.
The Quintero family’s commitment to this activity got even stronger during the lockdown in 2020: “We kept filling bottles during the pandemic. So we piled up a lot of bottles and, when the guys came to deliver my order and pick up the bottles, there were more than 100. That was really funny because the bottles were all over the place, so I told them: ‘I think we have enough of them for building a house, right?,’” mentions Dianey.
The bottles have become a reason for sharing as a family for everyone, from grandma to the grandchildren. The elders do it to protect the planet that will inherit the younger, and they do it as a result of their new environmental awareness. When Nicolás, one of the Quintero family children, is asked why do they fill the bottles of love, he answers without hesitation: “To take care of nature.”
In 2020, Grupo Nutresa delivered 2,7 tons of materials to the “Botellas de Amor” Foundation for the construction of furniture and houses.

“We are filling the plastic bottles at home because we know that they can be useful for something, for example, as materials for building a house.”

Dianey Quintero, Novaventa entrepreneur.

“I was amazed when I found out that Nutresa picked up the bottles of love. Right away, I said to everyone: ‘They build houses, parks and many other things with this plastic.’ So, of course, they all started filling more bottles and bringing them to me, and I hand them over to the guys of the vehicle that delivers my Novaventa orders.”

Dianey Quintero, Novaventa entrepreneur.

“I encouraged my mom to start filling the bottles of love. I told her to do it for her grandchildren, because what will we be leaving them if we don’t take care of our planet.”

Dianey Quintero, Novaventa entrepreneur.