By The Bookmark team
There’s no question that the world is changing, and the environment should be at the forefront of people’s minds. While many companies have tried to adopt more environmentally-friendly practices, it’s proven to be a challenging and often, an unsuccessful undertaking.
Yes, it’s true that companies who attempt to go green are facing an uphill battle, but that’s not to say that doing this is flat-out impossible. In this article, we’re taking a look at nine standout companies that have successfully gone green. These companies aren’t just making the world safer; they’re also setting an example for others to follow.
1. Alabama Chanin
Alabama Chanin bills themselves as a lifestyle company that produces “well-designed and thoughtfully made goods for the individual and the home”. The company seeks to marry thoughtful design with responsible production, and they use 100% organic cotton fabric and other repurposed materials in their creations.
Alabama Chanin came to fruition in 2000; back then, they exclusively sold hand-sewn garments made from cotton jersey t-shirts. Today, the company has come a long way, and they produce everything from apparel to cookware. While the bulk of products available on Alabama Chanin are handmade, the company also has their own sustainable machine-made design and manufacturing division, Bldg. 14.
According to the team at Alabama Chanin, it was a challenge to secure an organic cotton supply chain that is made in the USA; they had to “work tirelessly” in order to achieve this. Today, the bulk of the organic cotton that Alabama Chanin utilizes are produced at the Texas Organic Cotton Marketing Cooperative (TOCMC) in Texas. Interestingly enough, each bale of cotton produced within TOCMC is tracked from the field to the customer; Alabama Chanin even has access to their cotton producer’s name and the farm from which each bale of cotton is produced.
2. Liberty Bottleworks
Liberty Bottleworks, which was established in 2011, sells metal water bottles which are environmentally-friendly and made in the US. To Liberty Bottleworks, environmental stewardship isn’t just a cause or a marketing gimmick – it’s part of their DNA.
What’s so special about Liberty Bottleworks? In a nutshell, the company strives to be a zero-waste manufacturing facility. Among other things, that entails using recyclable materials and recycling waste; Liberty Bottleworks even makes the effort to treat their water before it leaves their property.
While Liberty Bottleworks came from humble beginnings, they’ve successfully bootstrapped their way to great success. Today, the brand is supported by a growing community of ardent fans (50,000 followers and counting on Facebook), and they supply their bottles to reputable companies such as Whole Foods, REI, L.L.Bean and Ace Hardware.
3. SunRidge Farms
SunRidge Farms started off as a small family business, formed in response to a healthier lifestyle movement in the 1970s. Today, the company manufactures and distributes a wide range of organic and natural foods including trail mixes, nuts and seeds, dried fruit, confections, and more.
It’s clear that SunRidge Farms is committed to going green – they’ve installed 3,052 solar panels in their factories; these produce 785,000 Kilowatt-hours of energy per year, which supplies up to 57% of the company’s energy needs.
Solar panels aside, SunRidge Farms also lays claim to having created one of our nation’s first Certified Organic and solar powered candy plants. In encouraging employees to reduce their carbon footprint, the company has in place a bike-to-work program that pays staff members $5 a day to bike to and from work.
Unlike the other companies on this list, Bennu doesn’t produce or manufacture any physical products. Instead, it’s a “green” social media marketing company that develops Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) solutions for businesses who want to go green.
The company has a diverse portfolio of clients, ranging from multinational corporations to startups, and they’ve been featured in reputable publications including Forbes and VentureBeat. Apart from providing sustainability strategy consulting and campaign development services to its clients, Bennu also walks the talk, ensuring that their own operations are environmentally-friendly and sustainable.
How do they do this? First and foremost, the company utilizes a green supply chain that targets best-in-class practices in energy efficiency, water consumption, and pollution prevention. On top of that, they also work with shipping and logistics companies who purchase reforestation or renewable power credits to offset transport emissions.
5. Saltwater Brewery
Saltwater Brewery, founded in Florida in 2013, is a microbrewery with a difference. The company’s goal is to save the ocean, one beer at a time – and they do this through donating to ocean-based charities and utilizing environmentally-friendly packaging.
When it comes to charities, Saltwater Brewery supports CCA Florida, Surfrider Foundation, The Ocean Foundation, MOTE Marine Laboratory & Aquarium and Billfish Foundation. They do this by organizing raffles and benefits, beach cleanups, and other community involvement programs. Saltwater Brewery also donates beer to and sponsors various events.
That’s not all – Saltwater Brewery is also the first brewery to use Eco Six Pack Rings instead of plastic rings. The former is made from wheat, barley, and other by-product waste, and they’re both biodegradable and compostable. When buying a 6-pack from Saltwater Brewery, you’ll be safe in the knowledge that you won’t be contributing to the 8 million tons of plastic that ends up in the ocean every year!
6. Itronics, Inc
Itronics, Inc. is an award-winning technology company which specializes in cleantech. Unlike Greentech, cleantech isn’t simply about being environmentally-friendly. Instead, it revolves around using new technology to allow a company to go green, and at the same time, enjoy greater financial benefits and sustainability.
While the technology company dabbles in various sectors, it’s most well-known for its unique, vertically integrated “zero waste” photochemical recycling facility. This game-changing facility uses Itronics’ proprietary technology to convert liquid photographic waste into liquid fertilizers that may be used in suburban and rural horticulture and agriculture.
Itronics has received a great deal of international acclaim for its technology. The company’s awards include the USA Gold at the International Green Apple Environmental Awards, the International Green Hero by the Green Organization in London, England, the Green Company of the Year by Nevada’s Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology (NCET) and more.
7. Galactic Pizza
Ever heard of sustainable, environmentally-friendly pizza? Now you have. Galactic Pizza is a self-proclaimed “values-led” company that seeks to incorporate as many socially beneficial actions into their day to day operations as possible.
For one thing, Galactic Pizza delivers pizza to their customers using 100% electric vehicles. They’ve been doing this since 2004, and the company is now on their 3rd generation of electric pizza delivery vehicles. Galactic Pizza also exclusively purchases renewable wind energy to run their restaurant, and they either use packaging which is made from recycled materials or is 100% biodegradable.
Galactic Pizza also makes it easy for diners to give back to society. With every order of the Second Harvest Heartland Pizza, the company donates $1 to Second Harvest Heartland, a Minneapolis-based foodbank.
8. Vertical Harvest
Vertical Harvest takes a multi-faceted approach to social entrepreneurship. First and foremost, they provide inclusive employment for people with different abilities. On top of that, the company builds hydroponic farms and vertical greenhouses that allow their employees to grow local produce for consumption.
Vertical Harvest’s first hydroponic farm is located on a town-owned lot in the heart of Jackson Hole, Wyoming. This state-of-the-art greenhouse is both cost-effective and efficient; it utilizes a 1/10 acre site to grow an annual amount of produce that is equivalent to 10 acres of traditional farming. The greenhouse also uses a small fraction of the water and energy typically used in traditional field agriculture.
All in all, Vertical Harvest replaces 100,000 lbs worth of lettuce, microgreens, tomatoes and other produce that is transported to Jackson Hole, Wyoming, every year. Because this produce is now harvested and sold locally instead of transported from across the country, this cuts down on a great deal of carbon emissions.
Ever thought of the carbon footprint that bottled water produces? In the US alone, consumers purchase 1 billion bottles of water per week, and approximately 37,800 18-wheeler trucks are required to deliver that water to us. Enter Vyykn, a subscription service which aims to get consumers to refill their reusable bottles instead of endlessly purchasing new bottles of water.
The goal of Vyykn is simple: to reduce the number of single-serve plastic water bottles in the world. To do this, the company sets up hydration stations that dispense filtered water. Each consumer gets their own metal bottle which comes with an RFID chip that tracks their water consumption. Consumers can select from several yearly subscription plans, and each time they dispense water at a Vyykn station, this action is tracked and stored in an online database. Vyykn is already being used by large corporations such as Microsoft, and it’s also partnering with Boise High School in Idaho. While the company’s success will hinge on whether it can develop a large enough network of Vyykn hydration stations, the response has been overwhelmingly positive thus far.
Editor’s note: This article originally appeared on The Bookmark at