Going green? Take notes from these four successful eco-minded businesses on how to successfully accomplish your goal:
Apple has won one of the world’s most highly-regarded enviro-driven awards for three consecutive years. The activist group Greenpeace has again deemed Apple the globe’s most environmentally-friendly technology platform. Apple’s low usage of conventional energy sources such as coal, nuclear and natural gas scored the company an 83 percent on the Greenpeace Clean Energy Index. The tech company also scored high in categories like renewable procurement and transparency. The next time you buy an iPhone, you can rest-assured that you’re making a green purchase.
Takeaway: It’s key to be transparent with your consumers. Let your customers know what energy sources you are using, where you are sourcing product materials from and how you are doing your part to procure renewables.
There’s no question about it. Subaru cares about the Earth. Subaru is America’s first zero landfill automaker. What does that mean? It means that all of the waste generated when making its cars is recycled or reused. From winning the Recycling Achievement Award in 1989 to achieving its zero-landfill status in May of 2004, Subaru has continuously worked to protect the Earth. The automaker also prides itself on supporting, preserving and protecting America’s National Parks.
Takeaway: Work to green up your business by finding out the footprint of your products. Can you recycle excess after the product is finished? Can it be reused?
Patagonia is one of the world’s most successful outdoor and activewear retailers. And it’s no wonder why. In addition to their reliable lineup of merchandise, Patagonia has a corporate philosophy that is for the planet. As a means to go green, Patagonia has erected repair centers around the globe to increase the life of their products, thus lowering their carbon footprint. Additionally, last year the outdoor active wear brand pledged $10 million of their Black Friday sales to environmental groups.
Takeaway: Identify areas of your business that could use some greening up. Find out of average lifespan of your products and work for a way to make it longer, just like Patagonia does with the global repair centers.
If the words “fresh” and “handmade” are what you like to see on a product’s logo, look no further than LUSH. Dedicated to the preservation of the environment, from the people to the animals that live here, the all-natural bath and body cosmetics brand takes a wildly different approach to manufacturing, packaging and marketing their goods than their competitors. LUSH uses as little packaging as possible and many of their products, from bath bombs to shampoo bars, are sold “naked,” without any packaging at all. And when packaging is needed, LUSH uses 100 percent post-consumer recycled paper, which is also compostable. But it’s not just the green packaging that makes LUSH a standout. Over 70 percent of LUSH’s products are totally unpreserved, made with raw materials, like almond and olive oil rather than mineral oils, an ingredient that many of the company’s competitors use.
Takeaway: Take a hard look at your packaging and point-of-sale waste. Does your customer really need a bag? Are you using too much paper when wrapping that item? Can your business forgo packaging all together? These are the questions you need to ask yourself.
Our staff writers come from all over the world, but one thing unites them - their passion for sustainability.