This is one amazing product. Softwood wood chips with just the right mix of magnesium chloride to help the chips to melt into and stick on the ice - making the safest icy walkway I ever walked on. This is a Swiss invention and Canadian distribution is finally underway.
See comments at the end of this page from people who have just tried it or to add your own experience, good or bad.
This is my fourth winter using this product and it is unbelievable. It stays put and if a lot of ice builds up over it, you may need more, but when it begins to melt, the chips float to the surface and then freeze right there where you need them. If you have very cold hard ice, fresh chips may not stick right away. Add just a bit of regular deicer or salt to the surface just to get the chips wet and then they stick for the rest of the winter. It is pH neutral for your plants and pets.
At the end of the winter, just vacuum them up and although they will be lacking the magnesium, you can mix them with a new supply the following winter. You could sweep them up but then you collect all the winter's dirt and grit. On a dry day after the ice has gone and the chips are sun dried, hold a vacuum hose just above the chips and since they are so light, they will just come up leaving the junk behind. I found that by strapping a stand-off stick to the hose I can keep just the right distance all the time. Add deicer or fine salt to the bag and you are ready for the next winter with very little loss of material. More details on their website -- www.EcoIceGrip.com
If you are looking for information on de-icers, follow this link.
Moving from a start-up operation with a Swiss product here in Quebec and Ontario in 2017, they were so successful that they built a manufacturing plant in Quebec which started up in December of 2020. As this catches on I am suspecting that the municipalities will start switching from salt for our sidewalks to more effective, longer lasting and natural wood chips. Some are experimenting with it near the river where the salt is an ecological problem. Since the chips can be spread by a standard municipal salt spreader, there is no new investiment needed. Salted areas need to be resalted quickly, the wood chips last a lot longer. We will be seeing more of Eco-Ice Grip.
February 2021 After some initial production problems, they now have the right size chips comming consistently out of the production machine all the time -- quality control is happy and 2021 distribution got underway.
Their 20L bag is retailing for $19.75, good value considering how long it lasts with the potential for re-use. STOP - In 2022 their production was increased radically which has allowed them to drop the cost to $7.99 per 20L bag! Now you can't afford anything else.
It is estimated that a standard driveway/walkway would probably require 3 bags in a season. If you can't find them at a store near you, you can order them from the web -- and if you buy the 3 bag special, with shipping costs, it comes out close to what the store charges.
December 2021 The ice has already hit the ground and the distribution list on the Eco-Ice Grip website has exploded with stores stocking it from Montreal to Mississauga and up to Ottawa. Check out their Dealer Locator. Two years ago you had to hunt for a bag, now you can find a store near you, or order it delivered.
You can contact EcoIceGrip themselves for more information or to be put on a list to receive information when a retailer is open near your postal code.
firstname.lastname@example.org or 844-ICE-GRIP (844-423-4747)
I like these guys and their product!