Tag Archives: sustainable

The environmentally conscious dog owner’s manual

My dog Daisy goes green on her chaise lounge from Doctor's Foster and Smith. The bed's filling is made of recycled soda bottles. Doctor's Foster and Smith carries a variety of "eco-friendly" items at http://www.doctorsfostersmith.com.

With all the hype around going green today, many people have forgotten that our furry friends can play a vital role in helping to save the planet. Below are some tips on how to go green with Spot.

Pick up the poo

By leaving your dog’s excretions on the ground, you are not only asking for a poor soul to step in doggy doo, but you are not being a very good steward to the earth. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has classified pet waste as a pollutant that can contribute to the degradation of human and environmental health when it enters the local watersheds as a result of storm water runoff. Some of the bacteria that can be found in doggy doo includes E. coli, fecal coliform bacteria, salmonella and giardia.

Feeling guilty about using a plastic bag to pick up that poop? There are a number of companies that sell biodegradable bags for the environmentally conscious pet owner. Try BioBag USA or PoopBags.com, or check out the offerings at your local pet store.

Give fido an eco-friendly toy

Many companies now offer eco-friendly versions of their dog toys. West Paw Design sells 100% recyclable toys that use fabric and stuffing made from recycled soda pop bottles. If you are a little more ambitious, you can try making your own dog toy.

Everything else

From sustainable dog sweaters, to organic pet food or an eco-friendly dog house (the first dog has one!) there is no real limit on helping your dog go green. Just do a little research, be creative and have fun!

Companies with a conscience

Stop. Close your eyes and think about the qualities of a successful company.

If you are like many environmentalists, these words may have came to mind: Profit. Exploitation. Pollution.

In today’s world it’s easy for us to get caught up in what is going wrong in in society, and in doing so, we forget to focus on the good. We forget to think about those companies who do their best to end exploitation and do good for the environment at the same time.

Here is what these “do-good” companies have realized: being a good sumaritan is actually good for your company.

Chipotle

Chipotle has all the ingredients (literally) for a successful business. They have a niche, they have a business sense, and they even top it off with tasty burritos.

But this product has a conscience. Chipotle’s menu consists of natural and organic ingredients.

The hallmarks of Food With Integrity include things like unprocessed, seasonal, family-farmed, sustainable, nutritious, naturally raised, added hormone free, organic, and artisanal. And, since embracing this philosophy, it’s had tremendous impact on how we run our restaurants and our business. It’s led us to serve more naturally raised meat than any other restaurant in the country, to push for more sustainable practices in produce farming, and to work with dairy suppliers to eliminate the use of added hormones from their operations. —Chipotle Web site.

Learn more about Chipotle’s Food With Integrity philosophy here.

Aveda

Aveda has a superb product and comparable prices to other designer hair and beauty manufacturers.

So what makes them stand out?

Aveda believes there is no responsible alternative to doing business other than through environmental sustainability. At Aveda, we also believe that profit and environmental responsibility will increasingly work together as more industries find out that “nature works” for both sustainability and the bottom-line. –Aveda Web site

Aveda uses 100 percent wind power to operate their manufacturing facilities. Aveda is also one of the largest purchasers of organic ingredients among beauty organizations. Aveda doesn’t stop there, however. They support responsible packaging, participate in charitable giving, and support the indigenous communities that help provide Aveda with its natural plant-based ingredients.

Organic valley

Organic Valley, the “Family of Farms,” is comprised of1,205 farmers from across the United States. Instead of the traditional company, where the wealth is distributed to only a few, each member of the Organic Valley cooperative shares the organization’s wealth.

Organic Valley prides itself in distributing food that is better for the environment and better for people.

A commitment to choosing local and regionally produced foods is a core value of the organic movement. In addition to fresher foods and reduced fossil fuel consumption, the profit from the sale of locally produced foods is more likely to find its way back into the community. Consumers and family farmers working together to support such local systems form a sustainable partnership. –Organic Valley Web site

And all this environmentalism has profitted the company. The sales of this $259-million cooperative jumped 25 percent in 2005. This is an above-average growth rate for even a conventional food company.

So, environmentalists and social advocates, do not despair! There IS good in the world! I feel a wind of change in here and I think I sense the dawn of a new kind of company — a company that gives back equally to what it takes. A company that truly cares about the world. A company with a conscience.