Eco-savvy business – is that you?

Do you shop at eco-savvy businesses?

Eco-savvy business is environmentally-sustainable business – business that operates in ways that, at best, benefit the environment and, at least, do minimal harm to it.

Why do we need eco-savvy businesses?

  • This planet is the only one we have! It’s not in anyone’s best interest to put in place business practices or sell products that damage it.
  • Products and services that are healthy for the planet are healthy for consumers. There’s always a market for healthy products and services and that market is growing.
  • Eco-savvy businesses draw on products that are sustainable rather than those that are dwindling (coal and oil) and that will increase in price as they become scarcer.

Eco-savvy business is the direction of the future.

Whether you’re a business owner, manager or customer, you can help foster the growth of eco-savvy businesses. Let’s work together to put the ECO into the ECOnomy.

Here are some ideas. You’ll see suppliers of environmentally-friendly packaging below.

Reduce waste

  • Choose packaging that can be easily recycled by customers (paper, cardboard, glass, aluminium).
  • Find alternatives to plastic bags (paper bags, reusable bags from recyclable materials, boxes).
  • Provide reusable crockery and cutlery in the kitchen, rather than single-use disposables.
  • Print on both sides of the paper.
  • Use cardboard stationery/folders/trays rather than plastic ones.
  • Use take-away cutlery made from bamboo rather than plastic.
  • Use paper straws rather than plastic ones.
  • Sell takeaway drinks in reusable cups or glass.
  • Don’t sell products packaged in foam.
  • Recycle your own waste.
  • Buy recycled products (eg paper).

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Hi, I’m Lyn McLean, one of the team behind the Eco-savvy Business Project.

I’ve been running a Shire-based business since 2003 and here are some of the steps I’ve put in place to help make my business more eco-savvy.

Reducing waste

  • Where possible, we choose products with no or minimal packaging.
  • We never use plastic bags when we purchase products for the business. (We take our own.)
  • We source unwanted packaging from local businesses.
  • We purchase carbon-neutral office paper & use both sides of the paper.
  • We take shredded paper to the local vet to use for pets’ bedding.
  • We recycle paper, cardboard and all plastics we are able to.
  • We recycle batteries at Aldi and printer toner at Officeworks.
  • We compost all food scraps.
  • For our new product range, we’ve chosen ‘plastic’ bags, made entirely from plant fibres (rather than petrochemicals), that are 100% compostable (details below).

Cleaning

  • We use environmentally-friendly cleaning products (bicarb soda for the bathroom; damp cloth for office furniture and Enviroclean floor cleaner).

Building

  • In our new office, we installed large, north-facing windows which provide natural light and warmth in summer.
  • We chose environmentally-friendly paint.
  • We generate electricity from solar panels.

I am sure there are many more eco-savvy ideas that we can implement in the future and look forward to hearing your ideas about how we can join in making our businesses more environmentally sustainable.

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We invite you to let us know about the eco-savvy activities of your business on our Facebook page.

Some suppliers of environmentally-friendly products and packaging

Here are some examples of manufacturers who provide environmentally-friendly packaging and cleaning products. We’re sure you’ll find more.

Vegware  http://www.vegware.com.au/

Greenpack: https://www.greenpack.com.au/

Download an entry form for the Sustainability Award now.

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