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Interview BerlinGreen: Coloyal suppliers

Smart garden boxes as a sustainable reward

It has an impact on the environment, society and the economy: the issue of sustainability is becoming increasingly important. At Coloyal, we select our premium range partners with the strictest requirements for materials, production and transport. Today, we take a closer look at one of our sustainable reward partners, BerlinGreen. In a short interview, we take a look behind the scenes of the startup.

Bild eines Mannes, der an einem Tisch sitzt, während eine Frau liebevoll an einem Mikrogarten arbeitet.

For those who don’t know you yet: What is behind BerlinGreen?

Olga: I am Olga, the founder of BerlinGreen and I studied civil and environmental engineering. Already during my studies I started to build up the startup BerlinGreen.

Filip: Hi, I’m Filip, also a founder and I studied Architecture & Urbanism. While working for different, bigger companies I got the idea to start a business. Additionally, I wanted to go in the direction of smart electronics in the home sector. I was able to see for myself in China how popular green vertical gardens are and how the technology behind them works. I then thought, okay, this could be used to develop an interesting business model for the German market. With our GreenBox, we then designed a compact, smart garden box for your own home. A real product that is not only sold via PowerPoint presentations, but can actually be touched. We then applied for funding for the idea from the city of Berlin and founded BerlinGreen at the TU. We built up the company step by step and are now producing in series.

How did you come up with the idea of founding BerlinGreen?

When we set up BerlinGreen regionally, we discovered that the topic of sustainability is of great importance to us. Even if the topic is a kind of blockade because it is difficult to find regional manufacturers and suppliers, it also offers advantages for us. We designed a wood-based supply chain and were able to eliminate the need for costly production through injection molds. Unlike large companies, this allows us to build our business locally in the best possible way. And that’s what we really enjoy doing. We don’t have to fly to Guangzhou or Shenzhen to set up our real supply chain and suppliers, but can source our materials from Brandenburg or Poland. We are happy that our materials last for more than 10 years. Our GreenBox is made of wood and can be repaired easily. It is certified and customers can send it back to us for repair, so we significantly reduce our waste.

What is the GreenBox and how does it work?

Olga: The GreenBox is a garden for your own home. Our GreenBox allows you to grow lettuces, chilies, mushrooms and other greens regardless of the season. You can also think of the GreenBox as a smart daylight lamp.

The box can be connected to an app and thus virtually controlled remotely. Seeds are scattered and the nutrient requirements and lighting can be easily controlled via the app.

For whom is the GreenBox especially suitable?

Filip: For all of them. (laughter)

Olga: At first we thought that GreenBox would be especially suitable for urbanites.

Filip: Exactly, we thought a lot about urban people in the founding phase. A young target group with high income. But actually we have an extremely broad audience:

  • About 20% of our customers come from the countryside, for example. They are already a bit older and use the box as an incubator for their own seedlings.
  • Then we have the group of parents who live in the city with their children and pets and also like to give the GreenBox as a gift.
  • But also demanding people like engineers are interested in the product. In Sweden, for example, a customer has put together an entire wall from our GreenBox. Even restaurants use our products.

What is the response to the product?

Filip: Our customers are really emotionally connected to our product. The fact that they can watch the plants grow and regard them as their “babies” gives them a lot of pleasure with the GreenBox. But our customers also find it positive that the box is not made of plastic, but is sustainable.

Filip: On our website we have received over 400 positive reviews for our products.

Olga: Many buy a second box and give it as a gift to friends and family.


How do you implement the topic of sustainability in your company?

Olga: We produce our product in Germany and Europe and avoid plastic as much as possible. Our product is packaged sustainably.

Filip: In addition, we rely on very high-quality plastic for our tray. Normally, this lasts over 10 years for us. It is insane to observe that many yogurts or Coca-Cola bottles are thrown away directly after one use. Therefore, we are proud that we can present such a durable product.

What is the most difficult thing for you to implement the topic of sustainability in your company?

Filip: The biggest challenge for us is to offer an affordable product for our customers. The issue of sustainability also means that manufacturing costs are rising and wages are fair. For our customers, this means a higher purchase price in the end, which unfortunately puts some people off.

What is the next goal you want to implement?

Olga: This year we have planned 2 new products. The microgreens and mushrooms are already eagerly awaited by our customers and they will be very happy about them.

Filip: Exactly. We also want to establish a Green Wall. So a complete wall that people can create in their living room or office with our plants.

Describe your path to making it into Coloyal’s reward stores.

Filip: We made our way to Coloyal’s rewards store via the IFA trade show in Berlin in September 2022. Astrid Steiner (Coloyal’s purchasing manager) helped us with the complex issue and proactively established contact.

How do you feel about working with Coloyal?

I would say the collaboration is already very promising. We have already worked with other agencies. In 90% of cases it was a disappointment, but not with you.


Has the Greenbox from BerlinGreen made you curious and would you also like to bring a garden into your own four walls? We are currently offering this environmentally friendly reward in the Deutsche Bahn reward world.

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