While staying dedicated to people and the planet we all share means we’re always looking for ways to do more, we’ll admit it: figuring out how to be zero waste is one of our greatest challenges as a company. Our recent change to post-consumer recycled plastic bottles was necessary, but when it comes to striving for zero waste, packaging ideas are just one area of consideration. From reusing and recycling as much material as possible to being intentional about our water use, tapping solar energy, and more, constantly seeking and adopting ways to keep waste away from landfills, oceans, and incinerators remains central to our mission. Because for us, this isn’t just about how to achieve zero-waste status - it’s about making choices and committing to efforts every day to do better for the environment.
And we want you to know how things are going.
In 2020, our company...
- Recycled 961 tons of material (that’s over 1.9 million pounds!)
- Diverted 92.6% of waste from our refuse stream
- Recycled and/or reused 24 different types of items/materials
Among the materials we reused and/or recycled last year were...
- 1.5 million pounds of wood, paper, cardboard
- Over 330,000 pounds of plastic
- Nearly 50,000 pounds of metal
- Almost 10,000 pounds of compost
And we didn’t stop there - PPE (gloves, hair, and beard nets), strapping, and fiber drums were also recycled and/or reused.
We proudly partner with a family-owned factory that is California Green Business Certified, and supports our efforts with a range of responsible practices that include:
- 100% of the electricity used is supplied from clean, renewable sources
- Utilizing low-flow water fixtures
- Maintaining drought-tolerant landscaping that requires limited irrigation
- Installing motion-activated LED lighting throughout all warehouse & manufacturing facilities to reduce electricity consumption
- Setting thermostats to temperature ranges that align with Department of Energy sustainability guidelines
- Using forklifts that are electric-powered and produce zero emissions
- Insulating industrial boiler systems, hot water pipes and mixing tanks to conserve energy
- Applying technology that recaptures thermal energy during the manufacturing process
- Reducing higher-energy HVAC system use by using ceiling fans to circulate the air
That’s just with manufacturing - our journey to zero waste also means implementing a number of ongoing efforts. Our refill options, for example, empower customers to reuse bottles and pumps at least once before recycling to keep anywhere from 1 to 63 bottles’ worth of plastic from winding up in a landfill. As a B-corp who recently underwent a packaging change, we knew that product contained in our original bottles couldn’t just be thrown away. After all, it’s the same great product on the inside, only now in post consumer recycled plastic bottles - and wasting perfectly good inventory simply because the packaging no longer aligns with the brand is not an option. Harnessing our courage to care sometimes means seeking innovative ways to do good in challenging situations. That’s why our solution was to create Community Care Bundles from the inventory in our previous packaging, then price them at a deep discount to ensure that the teachers, doctors, nurses, and other essential workers in our lives are always fully stocked on hand sanitizer.
Whether it’s staying diligent about wearing a mask and keeping hands clean for everyone’s health and safety, or implementing new packaging and manufacturing processes, we all have a part to play when it comes to protecting people and the planet.