Protecting and sustaining the environment for the generations to come is a huge priority as well as a responsibility. And we are very aware that packaging materials may negatively affect the environment. To that end, many of the products offered in our product line are created with this in mind. The symbol at the left identifies these GREEN choices.
Our Green Products
What Constitutes Green?
We may wish for a cut and dry answer as to what green means, but the answer is not simple. Green has many definitions. Different vendors use their own processes and materials to lessen their impact on planet earth.
To make things as simple as they can be, though, imagine a green product through its lifecycle. In doing so, you can see the basic ways to make a product green.
Where are the materials used in a product gathered from? Some products use recycled materials, like recycled plastic in some liners. Others substitute sustainable products for others that are less sustainable, like plastic cups made from plant life.
Going further, some manufacturers use green processes when harvesting materials; planting trees to replace the trees harvested for paper is a fine example. A company has many options for making the resources they use more green.
When it comes time to make the resources into a product, how is the process improved? A manufacturer can save resources by recycling materials used in processing, decreasing (or even creating) energy, and reducing waste.
Many products are green by their very nature. Not only is a product made from green resources or in a green way, but the product helps a user maintain the earth. For instance, foaming hand soaps decrease the amount of soap a user needs, decreasing waste in the process. Another example is cleaners that are bio-friendly. A product can be considered green by how it's used.
Once a product is used, where it goes has a huge impact on its green status. Is the product recyclable? Can it be re-used? Some products are biodegradable. Whether its aluminum, which can be recycled infinitely, or plates that are fully biodegradable, the "end of life" for a product can definitely make it green.
While many people consider the product's own lifecycle to determine its green status, how the product is transported also affects its carbon footprint. Product that is transported through inefficient means can negate some green value from its resources or recyclability.
Green Seals and Certifications
There are many green seals and certifications a product or vendor can receive. Here is a sample listing:
Organization that issues scientific certification of products.
Organization that focuses on indoor air quality.
Carpet and Rug Institute
Organization focused on floor cleaning products.
Design for the Environment
US Government initiative that promotoes green practices through "partnerships."
US Green Building Council
Non-profit organization working toward cost and energy efficient buildings.
US Green Building Council's building certification.
Forest Stewardship Council
Organization devoted to sustainable forestry.
Healthy Schools Campaign
Not-for-profit organization working to create healthy school environments for students, teachers, and staff.
Organization working toward sustainable, eco-friendly healthcare institutions.