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Ethonomics

The latest buzzword. Wikipedia’s definition: the study of ethics in the marketplace. For years now, companies have been working hard to “Go Green” (it’s almost business suicide not to). What started out as company one-upper, has quickly become an expectation from consumable-conscious consumers. Purchase decisions are no longer just based on price comparison, or calorie intake numbers. The newest differentiator is how much wastage is saved through product creation, packaging and distribution. Not only does it benefit the companies bottom line, but it is also great for market positioning.

The numbers are staggering when auditing behemoth companies*:

  • General Mills has reduced yogurt packaging enough to save 1,200 tons of plastic annually.
  • Unilever has reduced water consumption by 63%, and CO2 emissions by 39%.
  • Frito-Lay have one-third of their factories at “zero landfill” status.

Small tweaks on their end make significant differences. Sure, they are saving the planet (as much as possible), but they are also attracting green consumers willing to buy efficient products. It’s a win-win. Now that’s good business.

While you might not have the distribution levels as Coke, Walmart, or Unilever, every bit helps. Our own office consumables have been dramatically reduced to do our part. What changes in your company can be made?

* sourced via fastcompany.com

2 Comments

  • dougbrowncreative on Jan 28, 2010 Reply

    Canada Post says that one of the best ways for companies to green up is to clean their databases before they mail. 20% return rate on mass mailings is commonplace.

  • rgonterman on Jan 28, 2010 Reply

    From my experience of sitting on different environmental committees, “going green” forces a company to be more efficent. It may take extra creative thinking in the beginning, but the result is better for everyone. Thanks brad, I definitely dig the stats! Great post.

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