The concept of reduce, reuse, and recycle has been around for decades. While the origin of the phrase is somewhat debated, many believe it was created back in the 1970s after Congress passed the Resource Recovery Act to promote conservation efforts. Today, the Three R’s are still practiced, but many companies are taking the concept to new heights.
Companies across the globe are making a new commitment to zero waste. As the name implies, it means zero waste is sent to a landfill. This goal is lofty and takes much more effort than adding a few recycling bins to the office. Take a look at five companies that are leading the charge with zero-waste initiatives.
Sierra Nevada, the popular beer company, has a platinum-level zero-waste brewery in California. The company sends all of its used brewing ingredients, like barley and hops, to local farms to be used as feed. The brewery also uses a HotRot composting system that turns waste into compost.
Procter and Gamble
The multinational consumer goods corporation, Procter and Gamble has committed to sending zero manufacturing waste to the landfill. To accomplish this goal, each plant has found unique ways to repurpose waste. A plant in China, for example, turns waste into soil that’s used in local parks and a plant in Hungary sends production scraps to a cement company where it’s used to create bricks.
One of the largest vineyards in California, Fetzer Vineyards, has focused on sustainability since it opened its doors. It’s the first vineyard to open with 100% renewable energy and uses worms and microbes to clean wastewater so it can be reused on the property.
Seed and Bean
Chocolate lovers, rejoice. Seed and Bean is a UK company that produces zero-waste, organic chocolate that’s packaged in a compostable film made from Eucalyptus wood pulp. The company was the first chocolatier in Britain to move to a zero-waste model.
The popular car manufacturer, Subaru, made a commitment to zero waste more than ten years ago and it’s still going strong. It was the company’s employees who pushed executives to make the change too. The company meticulously tracks its waste with real-time bar codes and reuses or repurposes it throughout the plant. In addition, about 96% of all car parts are recycled.
Zero waste is possible
The zero-waste movement is beginning to replace the concept of reduce, reuse, recycle. Companies large and small are making sustainable choices and creating sustainable products for consumers.
As a consumer, you can do your part too. Aside from using refillable water bottles and canvas grocery bags, consider refilling the products you commonly use. For example, consumers could refill their laundry detergent, hand soap, household cleaners, and hair products. How? Refill technology.
It’s time to ask your favorite retailer to add refillable kiosks to their store so you can buy a product container once and refill the bottle as needed. Will you do your part towards a zero-waste world? If so, sign the petition to support refill technology.