Tips for Companies Trying to Clean Up Their Act
Despite pressing economic worries, the environment remains a top concern for consumers the world over. And that means environmentally-friendly business practices are as necessary for the bottom line as they are for the planet, says Joe Veilleux, president of Euromed USA (euromedusa.com).
“Being a producer of natural ingredients for pharmaceuticals and health supplements, we’ve always held environmentalism as a major company value,” says Veilleux, a registered pharmacist.“We’re glad to see that, even when people face unemployment and other economic hardships, they’re still committed to green practices.”
Recent polls, including BCG’s annual International Global Green Consumer Surveys taken throughout the recession, reveal an unwavering commitment to environmentalism, he says.
“Even at the height of the recession in 2008 and 2009, more than a third of consumers said they were willing to pay a little more for products that are better for the environment,” Veilleux says. “A majority said they consider a company’s environmental credentials when making purchasing decisions.”
Euromed recently earned “green” ISO 14001 certification for its Barcelona factory by meeting stringent criteria established by the world International Standardization Organization, which sets standards for sustainable and environmentally friendly manufacturing processes.
“In the five-year process of re-engineering our factory to meet the ISO 14001 criteria, we learned a lot that can benefit other companies,” Veilleux says. “Some of the steps we took cost little to nothing; others were, frankly, expensive. But all companies today need to be aware that consumers are looking at what they’re doing to – and for – the planet, and they’re making buying decisions based on that.”
These are some of the initiatives undertaken at Euromed Barcelona, which manufactures herbal extracts and natural active substances for customers in the United States and Europe.
• Recycling biomass – the company’s manufacturing waste product. We’ve found different ways to recycle the post-extraction biomass, depending on the product involved, Veilleux says. “Much of the residue is sent to companies that specialize in creating bio-gas – specifically, methane, which is used to generate power,” he says. “However, the residue left from milk thistle has such a high nutritional value, it’s actually used to feed farm animals. We ship the waste product to a company that dries it out and cleans it before it’s added to feed for pigs, chickens, cows, and the like. The biomass is given away for free, he adds.
• Wood pallets become compost. At Euromed, wooden pallets are reused until they can’t be used any longer. “At that point, they’re sent to recycling facilities, which use them in composting products,” Veilleux says. This step was easily accomplished by working through waste management companies.
• Printer toners get refilled. Empty toner cartridges are shipped to the company’s supplier, where they’re recharged and returned for use. If not for recycling, the toner cartridges would be deposited in landfills.
• Cleaner air and water. The company purchased new equipment to accomplish these goals, including on-site wastewater treatment and water purification plants, and equipment to decrease atmospheric emissions.
All totaled, Euromed spent $1 million to $2 million to upgrade its factory. It was money well spent, Veilleux says.
“We’re excited about the certification because it verifies that we’re one of the world’s leaders in environmentally friendly production,” he says. “That’s very important to us — we rely on plants, the Earth’s natural, renewable resources,not only for our business but for our personal health.
“We have a special interest in making everyone aware of how vital it is that we all take steps to prevent environmental damage.
About Euromed USA
Euromed USA supplies standardized botanical and herbal extracts and natural active substances for use in the pharmaceutical, health food and cosmetics industries. By extracting the necessary chemicals, the company can guarantee its products meet the precise chemical specifications necessary. Euromed was founded 40 years ago. Its parent company is the 100-year-old Rottapharm-Madaus corporation based in Italy.
Category Archives: CEO
Tips for Companies Trying to Clean Up Their Act
Last time, I wrote something about how wood pulps can be used to make biodegradable plastic cards for retailer and business promos. Of course, we all know that this will definitely require an expensive machine, or an equally huge fund, in order to pull off. This virtually renders smaller businesses unable to make these eco-friendly cards. These cards are very helpful with promoting your business, and you can’t just stop using them for your promos, memberships, and gift cards. If you’re one of those businesses who are looking for a cheap, eco-friendly alternative to plastic cards, then you are in luck. I’ve listed down a couple of alternative media and materials that you can use to market your business the same way as how you use your standard Plastic cards!
Paper – Paper is the obvious choice if you’re looking for the cheapest alternative. It’s easier and cheaper to produce paper cards than their plastic counterparts. They are made of resources such as wood or used paper, which are quite renewable. The card itself is biodegradable and easily disposable. This card is the perfect choice for one-time use cards such as discount vouchers or gift cards. The only flaw with paper cards is that it is not practical to use them for data cards with magnetic strips – but you can definitely add QR and Bar codes in it, just as long as customers make sure these paper cards won’t get wet.
E-Mails – E-mails are the fastest and easiest way to get in touch with a potential client or customer. However, using e-mails for marketing will also require you to make a decent-looking webpage. There are also unwritten, ethical rules regarding the use of e-mails for marketing. Rememember that people do not want spam, so don’t send it to just anyone! You’ll want to post a “news feed” subscription in your site so that you’ll be able to have an e-mail list where you can send e-mails without worry. You should also mention that you’ll be randomly giving away discount promos via e-mail to encourage folks to subscribe.
Mobile Gadgets – I was planning to list “alternative” to your typical plastic cards but this one is more of like the plastic card’s “next step in evolution”. The invention of smartphone innovated how common folks gain access to resources that you can’t usually get from outside your home, such as electronic cash and Internet. Your business shouldn’t get left behind by this technology, so start taking advantage of it! Electronic credit is already accessible via smartphones so folks can pay for your products or services on the dot. A lot of freeware sites provide ways for clients and customers to scan QR and Bar codes with their smartphone’s cameras. The image above is a great example for using these scanners: Koreans placed a virtual grocery store for customers to scan. Each item for sale has its own QR code to be added to your shopping cart. With electronic money, customers can pay for the item and have it delivered to their home while they’re still in the train. Of course not every business can afford electronic billboards like that. For a cheaper alternative, use posters, stickers, or tarpaulin banners.
These 3 tips are both eco-friendly and cheap for small businesses to use. You can even do most of these things on your own! Hopefully, this can help your small business to stay afloat and compete with bigger business rivals.
Therese Shaw is an advocate of recycling through turning clutter into art and other practical items. When not doing arts and crafts, she does freelance writing occasionally for companies like Cardprinting.us, a print service that uses environmental friendly plastic cards and offers keytagprinting.
CLICK ON THE PHOTO
When Isaac Lamb decided to propose to his girlfriend, Amy, he knew he wanted to do something over-the-top. but not even Amy was prepared for the elaborate proposal he staged with 60 of their closet friends and family members. The video went viral – and has already amassed almost 6 million views on YouTube at last count.
The video even got Bruno Mars’ stamp of approval!
Many people earn degrees based on their interests, it only makes sense, right? However, let’s face it, not everyone has same interest and maybe your run slightly (or highly) more to the nerd side. Sure you would love to be musician or draw concept art for car makers, but that just isn’t your thing. You are far more into Dungeons and Dragons than designing buildings. If so, here are some degrees you might like.
Astronomy – If you wish you could boldly go where no man has gone before, well now you can, at least in your mind. If long night and large telescopes intrigue you then why not study astronomy? Granted, this can be pretty intense and mind boggling at times but deep down inside, you know you would love every minute of it. You might even get lucky and discover a planet or an asteroid about to hit the earth.
Physics – Physics and any other type of physics have a lot of overlap. If you like colliding invisible particles in multi-billion dollar pieces of equipment then you should love this field. If you know what a mass spectrometer is, or how to use one then you definitely need to major in this. Once again, this is no casual stroll through academic America, it is pretty tough stuff to wrap your head around, but you can do it. Just don’t look too closely too quantum physics, that stuffs insane.
Math – If you are math addict then you have little choice but to major in math. For some reason, geeks everywhere seem to love this subject and somehow they actually understand it. Teaching would be your most likely option, but if you learn your advanced stuff you could get into programming, code breaking or the exciting world of accounting. If this isn’t for you, do what I did and go for…
History – On the entirely different end of the nerd mass spectrometer you can delve into the depths of history and the liberal arts. Learn about the battles epic battles with knights and maybe reenact some of them yourself. Antiquities, artifacts and folklore are yours to master. You can even specialize in a military masters degree. If worst-comes-to-worst, you could at least get a job at Medieval Times.
Which bring us to literature, the cute, shy sister of history. Everyone has seen a bookworm or two in their lives. You know, they are always reading. They read in the car, they read while working out, they read while they eat and they fall asleep while reading. Are all books nerdy? No, but most are. For those who love to explore the vast plains of the unbridled imagination then literature is for you.
Which leaves us to the more important and eternal question, what will you do with these degrees? Well, it is true that many people end up doing something not related to their degree at all, teaching is the most obvious choice. You can go and be an inspiring influence and younger nerds who were once just like yours and let them see just where they will end up.
Jeff Jordan lives, breathes and writes in sunny Southern California. He mainly writes about education. automobiles, navy education, real estate and pop culture. He would write about romance and dating but sadly knows nothing about it.
It’s true that what’s ‘cool’ and what’s ‘dull’ are pretty subjective and one person’s best trade conference ever could be an event of excruciatingly boring proportions to someone else. Despite this, there are some trade conferences that most people are not going to consider exciting, no matter which way you look at them – such as these 10 of the world’s dullest trade conferences.
1. The International Water & Effluent Exhibition (http://www.sustainabilitylive.com/Content/IWEX/7/) might well be of interest to those within the industry, but to the rest of the world, a conference that deals with the disposal of various different types of waste and water technology is not going to float many boats.
3. The International Portable Toilets and Public Health Facilities Exhibition (http://www.toiletschina.com) is definitely something of an acquired taste and unlikely to hold much allure for anyone without a very specific interest in certain types of sanitation.
4. Contamination Control & Cleanroom Products Exhibition (http://www.cleanroom-technology.co.uk) no doubt deals with some essential issues, but for the average Joe, the subject matter of this exhibition isn’t going to be worth cancelling any plans for.
5. American Coatings Show (http://www.american-coatings-show.com) is three whole days of events and exhibitions dedicated to – yes you guessed it – coatings; that’s paints, sealants, adhesives and the like to the rest of us. Unless you have a very specific interest in coatings, you may well be better off watching paint dry…
6. The Plastics Design & Moulding Exhibition & Conference (http://www.pdmevent.com) certainly seems to deserve the title of one of the 10 of the world’s dullest trade conferences – I mean there’s not a lot you can say about plastic design and moulding is there.
7. The Festival of Quilts (http://www.twistedthread.com/pages/exhibitions/viewExhibition.aspx?id=38&view=overview) may have limited appeal for those in the professional quilting business, or anyone who wants to indulge in several days worth of quilting talks, demonstrations and presentations. For most of the rest of the world though, it’s not going to offer anything groundbreaking.
8. The International Cheese Technology Expo (http://www.cheeseexpo.org) is a focused event for those in the cheese and diary industry – looked at as a percentage of the world’s population, that’s not a huge figure, so the number of people who might find this expo more interesting than cleaning out the fridge is likely to be small. Buy tickets for this for any enemies you have with a dairy intolerance.
9. Harrogate Flooring Show (http://www.theflooringshow.com) claims to be the UK’s only dedicated flooring event, a title that it may well hold for very good reason. This is one very specifically for the flooring enthusiasts – there’s not even a roofing exhibit to break up the monotony.
10. Lets face it, offices are pretty dull places at the best of times, and tend to be somewhere most people try to spend as little time as possible. A whole trade conference about offices then is only for real gluttons for punishment. The Office Show (http://www.officeshow.co.uk) offers two days of presentations, Q&As and exhibits about office equipment, stationary, office furniture and the like, creating a giant office-like environment. Yay.
Although there might be some strange souls among us who relish the thought of events like these, on the whole it’s probably fair to say that these 10 of the world’s dullest trade conferences give each other a run for their money in terms of the yawn factor.