Entrepreneurs selling air from iconic Aussie locations to smog-clogged Chinese

Helen Wellings

A pair of Aussie entrepreneurs has begun capturing the air from around some of our natural treasures to sell it to heavily polluted China.

It's called air-farming, and apart from the packaging there is no digging, planting or harvesting required.

And it's a free commodity there for the taking – whiffs of air for sale to the Chinese.

John Dickinson thinks Australian air is 'good enough to bottle'. Source: 7 News
John Dickinson thinks Australian air is 'good enough to bottle'. Source: 7 News

"The air pollution is very heavy now in China so we all love the pure air from Australia," Chinese personal shopper Vivian Zhou told 7 News.

"I buy the air from Australia for my clients and I post it back to them."

When bottled water was introduced in Australia in the late 1980s people thought it was ludicrous to buy something that comes out of a tap for free.

Clean & Green Air is the company name. They sell air in a can. Source: 7 News
Clean & Green Air is the company name. They sell air in a can. Source: 7 News

Three decades later Australians spend half-a-billion dollars a year, meaning canned air might soon be in demand all around the polluted world.

John Dickinson and Theo Ruygrok developed technology to capture air from the most visited tourist locations all around Australia.

Theo Ruygrok captures air in the Australian wilderness. Source: 7 News
Theo Ruygrok captures air in the Australian wilderness. Source: 7 News


"We think our air is good enough to bottle absolutely," said Mr Dickinson, co-founder of Green and Clean Air.

The air is pumped into disposable cans marketed as Pure Gold-Coast Air, Bondi Beach, Blue Mountains, Tassie and Yarra Valley Air. They soon plan to include private labels for wineries like The Barossa and Margaret River.

The air cans sell for just shy of $20. Source: 7 News
The air cans sell for just shy of $20. Source: 7 News

"Each holds upwards of one hundred and thirty deep breaths," Mr Dickinson said.

"[You] take off the lid, put the lid on the end, the cap fits over the mouth… and take a deep breath of pure air."

Company co-founder Theo Ruygrok said the cans contain the "smell from the beaches have some salt in it while the smell from the mountains has some eucalypts".

And at nearly $20 a pop, it's a product that literally plucks money out of thin air.