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Why Eco-Friendly Office Cleaning is a Hard Sell Despite these 7 Powerful Benefits

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IzzitGreen recently caught up with Michael Gottlieb, Managing Partner for Advanced Green Solutions (AGS), to learn about the world of commercial green cleaning: its worth and its challenges. Based in California, AGS is one of the top 20 fastest growing providers in the MilliCare network. MilliCare is an international commercially-focused carpet and textile care provider with a robust sustainability story centered on the use of its proprietary Dry Care technology. The network works throughout the world and maintains the US Green Building Council headquarters as one testament to depth of the organization’s sustainability. Through my conversation with Michael, I learned about the advantages of choosing a green cleaning provider and considered it was an easy sell. I was surprised to learn that eco-friendly office cleaning doesn’t always sell itself, even with these seven convincing reasons.

1. Provide Better Business Environment through Improved Air Quality

Ahhhhh. To breathe easily at work is priceless. Cleaner air at your business can create a safer, more enjoyable work environment for your employees and a superior experience for your customers. Fresh, clean air has been shown to boost workplace productivity by as much as 10% and green building owners can promote these and other environmental benefits to prospective tenants to add value to real estate. Cleaner air can come from MilliCare’scarpet cleaning system that has been shown to improve indoor air quality by as much as 99% by removing pollutants from your carpet. A proper cleaning helps keep volatile organic compounds, mold, bacteria and other potential allergens out of your air. So, take a deep breath and get back to doing what you do best.

2. Save Money and the Earth with Reduced Water, Energy and Carbon Emissions

Typically water usage is a substantial environmental cost of traditional carpet cleaning methods, but a dry-centered method uses 99.5% less water than water-based cleaning systems. To put it another way, MilliCare’s dry system saves an average of 50 gallons of water for every 10,000 feet of carpet cleaned over traditional water-based methods. The bottom line: less water usage means a lower water bill for your business.

Additionally, green cleaners can help you lower your energy bill and reduce your environmental impact. In fact, hot water extraction methods use up to 319% more energy to clean the same space as MilliCare, which translates into 77% higher emissions. Using a dry method can save you 85% on your electricity bill. To understand just what an impact this can have,  MilliCare’s international network cleaned more than 400 million square feet of carpet in 2014 and saved more than 17 million gallons of water, more than 2.5 million kilowatt hours of energy and more than 1,500 tons of carbon emissions! Michael offers an example, “We do a year-end report for many of our clients, and for one client last year we saved them about 3,300 gallons of water, 2,300 kilowatt hours of energy and about three-quarters of a ton of carbon emissions. And that’s for one client.” That’s a huge impact. Michael comments, “A lot of people only think of green as installing photovoltaics or changing the light bulbs or adding low flow water filters. All of that is terrific and a necessary part of sustainability, but we feel like we can plug into any facility and provide significant savings for them.” Who doesn’t want lower operating costs and to reduce their environmental footprint without having to invest in your facility?

3. Save Money with Less Waste and Lower Replacement Costs

A long lasting carpet starts with fibers that stay clean and strong. All traditional cleaning methods leave behind water and soap residue that weaken carpet fibers and attract additional soiling, causing them to become dirty again more quickly.  A dry-method applies an eco-friendly polymer that clings to soil in the carpet but not the carpet itself. When the polymer is vacuumed away, clean and smooth fibers are all that are left. Longer lasting carpets not only dump less waste into landfills, but they also lower operating costs, as you don’t have to replace your carpet nearly as often. In fact, with a proper, sensible maintenance program MilliCare can help extend the life of a carpet by as much as a third to help you maximize the value of your carpet investments.

4. Boost your Progress or Keep your Promise to LEED Certification

Using an eco-friendly carpet and textile cleaner can support 4 of the 6 LEED Existing Buildings: Operations & Maintenance categories: Water Efficiency, Energy & Atmosphere, Materials & Resources and Indoor Environmental Quality. AGS can even assist with your LEED renewal. Whether you already have a LEED certified building or you’re working toward certification, a strong supporting cleaning partner is an increasingly importantstep as the USGBC raises the bar on LEED certification. AGS goes a step further with personalized data, “A lot of our clients on the commercial side have committed to sustainability, either they are Energy Star rated or LEED certified buildings so we provide them with reporting when we service their facility.”

While LEED certification is incredibly valuable as anenvironmental initiative, it can also provide several other benefits. Becoming serious about running a greener business can deliver social and financial rewards. Depending on your local government participation, you could be eligible for tax credits, tax breaks, reduced fees, grants and/or low-interest loans, not to mention, the long-term cost savings and admiration of your customers for your commitment to green.

5. Get Back to Work with Fewer Disturbances and Saved Time

Tired of waiting around for your just-cleaned carpets to dry? Sick of scheduling building cleaning at awkward times to avoid a disturbance? With a dry-centered method your carpet is ready to use as soon as your cleaners are done. Plus, who wants to worry about cleaning when you’ve got a business to run? Michael says, “Floor care is often not at the top of people’s priorities … until they have a problem. Problems can be expensive and disruptive, especially if you have to replace your carpet unnecessarily. We protect your carpet and take the issue of floor care off your plate and we do it in the least disruptive way possible. You just come into work in the morning and the only thing you notice is clean carpet.” Your journey from dirty to clean without needing time to dry is invaluable to your busy schedule. Plus, if you’re a smaller business, hiring a professional green cleaning service can save you time and energy, leaving you to dedicate yourself to running your great-green business.

6. Supports Healthier Employees and Lower Insurance Costs

By using a green cleaning service that has committed to dispensing with many toxic chemicals, you can harbor a safer business environment for your employees and customers. Some cleaning products have been shown to contribute to eye, skin and respiratory irritation as well as asthma, allergic reactions, and with longer exposure even reproductive problems and cancer. Reducing chemicals from your cleaning approach can greatly reduce the potential for harm by minimizing everyone’s exposure through ingestion, inhalation and skin exposure. For example, AGS just launched SHINE Hard Surface Care, Michael explains, “A lot of the processes that we use for different areas allow us to completely dispense with any chemicals and every case where we can, we use Green Seal certified products. . . For ones that can’t certify under Green Seal, for example, certain disinfectants won’t qualify under Green Seal, we seek to minimize their use in the facilities we maintain or eliminate them altogether. For example, we can strip a floor without using a single chemical. If you’ve ever been in a building where the floors are being stripped, you know how unpleasant that can be.”

Many insurance companies recognize that using an eco-friendly cleaner reduces toxic stress on our bodies. Green-certified cleaning products are made from less toxic compounds that cut down on indoor air pollution and contaminants in the water and solid waste streams of a business, which translates to an all around healthier and safer environment. Some insurance companies may even offer a discount on a company’s health insurance premiums with proof of a contract with a green cleaner.

7. Provides Better Service at Competitive Prices

As consumers are recognizing the many benefits of more eco-friendly products and services, prices are plummeting across the board. According to Jason Luke, Associate Director of Custodial Support Services at Harvard University Medical Center, “In the past, green cleaning products were more expensive, but that is not the case anymore. At minimum the decision to use green cleaning products will be cost neutral. A strong case can be made for cost savings, but this largely depends on what one is switching from.” Often part of a greener cleaning approach involves cost savings by replacing a pre-prepared traditional cleaning product with a highly concentrated more eco-friendly cleaner.

Similarly Michael explains, ”Cost is always a factor. . .generally everyone assumes that when they hear green, that generally we’re going to be more expensive. But we’re extremely competitive on price, we have to be because if you are not economically sustainable than you won’t be environmentally sustainable.” AGS understands that it has to be competitive on price and exception on service to continue growing its business because the reality is that green is not a top priority for most businesses, not above the bottom line at least. But, green service providers often provide superior service and experience as a by-product of focusing on their environmental impact. Michael elaborates, “A lot of times sustainability is just being a little bit smarter and more thoughtful. . . .There are just much better ways of doing things today, than how people have always done them. You just have to be open to change”

Eco-Friendly Office Cleaning is a No-Brainer Right?

From their beginnings in 2011, Michael at Advanced Green Solutions wanted, “to challenge some of the pre-conceived notions that persist with being green: that it is complicated and expensive and that you have to sacrifice service or quality in order to operate sustainably.” Nevertheless, he recognized his ambitious mission especially in the service world where the issue of sustainability is incredibly complicated. “There’s a lot of green washing out there and a lot of the folks that are established in the industry have co-opted sustainability in their marketing and their branding but they have only modestly incorporated it into their actual practice.” Thin green claims and a higher price leave a bad taste in everyone’s mouth. “Frankly we find that with most of it, even the more sustainable operators out there, if you start to peel back the layers on their story it gets pretty thin, and they usually charge a premium to be green. None of that really flies for us.”

There is a very real and persistent notion that something must be sacrificed if a company goes green, and AGS has to constantly fight through that misconception. Michael, elaborates, “Because we do things differently than what people are used to seeing, we do have to spend a lot of time educating people, showing them what we do, sharing with them who we’re working with already to reassure them that we do what we say. Delivering on what we promise is paramount for us. You would be surprised how few service providers believe in that – green or not.”

California’s drought has pushed water conservation to the forefront and providing a safe work environment for employees should be a priority considering that salaries are usually a business’ biggest operating expense but saving water or providing a cleaner healthier work environment is often one of the last things that AGS discusses with prospective clients. Sustainability often is not a priority for many people, even in eco-minded California. Michael relates, “Most people are so busy and the things that we’re addressing are almost things they don’t want to have to deal with or think about. The issue ultimately is where green fits into the hierarchy of priorities for our clients, and truth be told even with clients that are really committed to sustainability, green is not the first issue on their list.”

Despite these obstacles and perceptions Advanced Green Solutions adapts and powers forward. AGS has figured out how to be a resource for businesses at either end of the sustainability spectrum and to thrive. Michael explains, “For some clients we are that low hurdle, first step toward sustainability. We introduce them to sustainability in an easy way. And then for other clients who have really committed to sustainability we’re one more tool in their tool belt that compliments and enhances what their green commitments.” It’s not easy for businesses to dig through everything and figure out what works and what doesn’t, and who’s sustainable and who’s not. Luckily for them in the green commercial cleaning space at least, AGs has done that homework for them and can deliver on the pillars of sustainability, value and service.

Your space, your staff and your customers are what make your business great. If you want to run a greener business, you can replace your light bulbs and recycle your printer paper, or you can make a significant environmental difference and change the way you run your facility. That means finding truly sustainable service providers.

It might be scary, it might make you worry about quality, and you might doubt you can afford it. But it’s not, you shouldn’t, and you can. It’s for the benefit of everyone, including your business.

About Advanced Green Solutions

Based in Van Nuys, California, AGS provides top of the line green commercial cleaning services and strives to supply, “Simple, easy to use services that everyone can understand, that are deeply green, save people money, and give them better results and service.” Along with carpet and textile services, the company provides a zero-waste moving service – Rent A Moving Box – and in 2014 it launched an eco-friendly hard surface maintenance program –SHINE Hard Surface Care – which offers the latest floor care technology and products to offer a more sustainable, less disruptive and more cost effective alternative to traditional floor care. So far in 2014, AGS has saved on behalf of its clients more than 51,000 gallons of water, 7,100 kWh of energy, 2.4 tons of carbon emissions and kept more than 5 tons of waste out of landfills.

Find out more at www.AdvancedGreenSolutions.com. Or www.rentamovingbox.biz

A 3D Imprint on the Environment

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3D printing could just be another evil to add to the list of environmental enemies. Yet as this innovative industry advances, so does its potential to be compatible with sustainability.

The technology is not new. The machines were developed in the 1980s and have already been used in laboratories, aerospace companies, and industrial design.

But with costs rapidly decreasing, 3D printing has already spread into the fields of jewelry, automotives, geographic information systems, and even into private homes. It has been dubbed as ‘the third industrial revolution’.

It’s an additive manufacturing technology that requires the use of a computer, 3D modelling software (Computer Aided Design or CAD), machine equipment, and layering material. The printer creates objects by adding layer upon layer of material(s) – either plastic, metal, or concrete.

A CAD sketch is made, the printer reads the data from the CAD file, and places consecutive layers of liquid, powder, sheet, or other material in a layer-upon-layer fashion to produce the 3D object.

Then lasers slice through the material to carve out the required shape. Subsequently, the layers are stuck together to create a solid object inside the printer chamber.

This whole process can be conducted unsupervised.

There are many 3D printing technologies that work very differently to one another. Each of these has its own benefits and limitations.

The possibilities of printing

Fabricated: The New World of 3D Printing is a book by Hod Lipson and Melba Kurman. It reveals the technology’s remarkable eco-friendly possibilities, as well as its drawbacks.

The chapter entitled “Green, clean manufacturing” highlights a design project called ‘Solar Sintering’. This project was carried out in the Moroccan desert, using a solar-powered 3D printer. The printer’s raw material was the desert sand which was melted to form glass (using a magnifying glass).

Markus Kayser, who conducted the project, said, “In this experiment, sunlight and sand are used as raw energy and material to produce glass objects using a 3D printing process that combines natural energy and material with high-tech production technology.”

This is a perfect example of green manufacturing.

Co-author Lipson is the Associate Professor of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering and Computing & Information Science at Cornell University. He says that 3D printing “has a positive longer term impact that can outweigh [its] limitations”:

  • Due to unconstrained geometry, parts can be made to be lighter and stronger, and therefore have less environmental impact over the lifetime of the product.
  • Parts can be printed on demand where and when they are needed, so they can shrink parts of the supply chain and compact distribution networks.
  • Storing ready-to-print design files or digital inventories is much more eco-friendly than warehouses full of physical inventory.
  • One day distributed 3D printed manufacturing could enable companies to make products locally, closer to their customers.
  • The technology is able to use recycled or earth-friendly printing materials.

Read the fine print

3D printing has all this green potential, but at the present moment it is not being maximized and instead posing an additional threat to the natural world.

“Additive manufacturing creates more waste material when printing in plastic, compared to injection molding (because of support structures),” says Lipson. “It also uses more than ten times the amount of energy per kg of material. For metals, it produces less waste material compared to CNC Machining [a subtractive manufacturing process]. This is because the unused metal powder can be 100% reused in the next print.”

Several other factors need to be considered:

  1. A 3D printer, regardless of what material it uses, consumes a massive amount of electrical energy.
  2. Additive manufacturing is opening up another avenue for plastic waste – a real bane for nature.
  3. Printing plastic emits secondhand fumes, which contain toxic byproducts such as ultrafine particles; these are dangerous for humans and animals.
  4. Another risk is that as 3D printers enter more and more homes, users will be tempted to waste more. Fabricated makes a comparison to emphasize this last point:

“When they were introduced a few decades ago, low-cost laser printers did not lead immediately to the paperless office; instead cheap and widely available printing technologies encouraged people to print casually and wastefully. Similarly, ubiquitous 3D printers might lead to the production of more junk, making it easier for people to fabricate objects in a wasteful spirit without realizing the downstream costs of their actions.”

“All of this adds up to the fact that if 3D printed manufacturing were merely scaled up to global proportions, there would be nothing green about it.”

Contrary to many opinions, 3D printers are not the automatic answer to environmental problems. Certainly the technology is quickly gaining momentum with its innovation. However it’s up to humans to put these devices to good use with creative solutions – such as the aforementioned ‘Solar Sintering’.

By using the right energy and the right materials, 3D printing could manufacture a greener planet.

 

Honest Tea Provides Hope for Green Plus Grow

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Every business goes through growing pains, but these aches can be particularly painful for a good-green business. All decisions have a trade-off, sustainability is often on the chopping block up against priorities like profitability and growth. IzzitGreen believes that green and grow are not mutually exclusive. We were recently inspired by our friends over at Honest Tea and their 2013 Mission Report that details their continuing sustainability efforts despite scaling up.

Honest Tea, an organic beverage company based out of Bethesda, MD has exploded from humble beginnings in co-founder and “TeaEO”, Seth Goldman’s kitchen. Part of sustainability is honesty, and Honest Tea has always been. . . well, honest. To be as transparent as possible, they were one of the first companies to display total calories per bottle, not per serving. Similarly, Goldman describes his supply chain, “We have videos and footage and pictures of tea gardens in India that I visited.” In their 2013 Mission Report, Honest Tea’s transparency is obvious as they explore both the efforts and challenges of their growing sustainability focus. Honest Tea isn’t afraid to talk about their shortcomings. Seth explains,

“We are conscious of it every time we sell single-serve packages, which add to the waste stream. We continue to work to lightweight our packaging and to increase national recycling rates, but with rates for PET plastic averaging 30%, we can assume that most of our bottles are not recycled.”

Instead of perusing a promotional brochure, I felt as if I were reading a heart-felt and critical review of the company’s performance against their sustainability goals. This past year, Honest Tea has continued to hold true to their values despite significant growth since acquired by the Coca-Cola Company in mid 2011, an acquisition that some might compare to selling one’s soul to the devil.

What some customers may not understand is that this growth actually has the potential to increase the company’s sustainable impact. The before and after acquisition numbers are hard to deny. In 2008 Coke invested in Honest Tea when the company had 15,000 stores, while today Honest Tea can be found in over 100,000 shops. That’s a lot of organic certified (GMO-free), Fair Trade tea out there. Honest Tea strives for the first mainstream organic beverage, and Coke can make that happen by increasing availability and impact of the brand. Last year Honest Tea purchased close to 5 million lbs of organic ingredients in contrast to the 790,000 lbs they purchased in 2007. Additionally, the company-generated Fair Trade premiums, which go directly to farmers to support local community development projects, grew from $30,000 in 2007 to a whopping $126,304 in 2012. Honest Tea looks at the big picture, Goldman explains,

“We’re talking about changing the landscape of agriculture in the developing world. That happens when you get to a scale where you can really make an impact.”

Nevertheless, Goldman understands that there are, “inevitable challenges that arise when a mission-driven group of entrepreneurs works alongside a 126-year old multinational corporation.” For example, early in the relationship Coke strongly requested that Honest Tea remove the phrase, “No high-fructose corn syrup” from their packaging. But, Honest Tea stuck to their guns, their message remained, and Coke acquiesced.

With capital available from Coke, Honest Tea has been able to improve some of their products in their own way. The company built expensive tea-brewing facilities on either side of the country, resulting in better tasting and more efficient production using less water and waste. This past year they also:

  • Moved to sweetening their Honest Kids Organic Juice drinks with nothing but fruit juice which significantly increased the company’s demand for organic white grape juice. Honest Tea orders now account for a majority of the world’s kosher, organic white grape juice supply!
  • Joined the Rodale Institute to support organic farming research and outreach.
  • Worked with Fair Trade USA to help the company source teas that support better prices and wages, worker safety, community and environmental protection.
  • Reduced carbon emissions from transit by 1,300 metric tons of CO2 by consolidating their West Coast production plant.
  • Gave away more than 1,200 foldable bikes to consumers to celebrate events like Earth Month and Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
  • Designed a larger, multi-serve bottle for tea and kid products, offering more value and saving plastic equivalent to 700,000 16.9 fl. Oz. PET bottles.
  • Collected over 70,000 beverage containers for recycling at their Great Recycle events to raise awareness of container recycling.

Continuing to innovate, in January Honest Tea launched their zero-calorie HonestTeaUnsweetLemonsoda line, Honest Fizz, which it hopes to move to completely organic as the supply chain for organic sweeteners develops. Their newest beverage, Unsweet Lemon Tea, was released just recently and not surprisingly is made with brewed, organic and Fair Trade Certified tea leaves. Honest Tea generously sent Izzit a box, and we love the five wholesome ingredients that offers a simple and reassuring way to enjoy a refreshing beverage without sugar, calories or yuck. For once, a drink that claims to be “unsweet” is honestly just that.

We’ve all been hurt before: A favorite band that sold out to fame, an amazing book that was turned into a horrible movie, bigger and better and to hell with the soul. Honest Tea offers us a different story of a symbiotic relationship between green and grow initiatives. Big problems need big solutions, and if green is going to go mainstream this model is crucial. Due to Honest Tea’s insistence, the largest beverage supplier in the world, Coke has obtained organic certification for several of its bottling plants. By staying true to their identity and values Honest Tea provides the much needed push to move sustainability upstream.

Image Credit: Honest Tea

Credo Mobile: Phone Service that Gives Back

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Though the Credo Mobile cell phone service has yet to turn 15, the parent company has been around for almost 30 years and has been an outspoken voice for environmental protection and other progressive causes since its inception. Credo calls its customers members and activists, making it even easier for them to feel like they are a part of something great. The company offers an alternative to the major telecoms dominating the market, choosing not to contribute money to conservative campaigns and offering transparency in the flow of its profits.

Boasting an impressive track record of donations, petitions and tree planting efforts, Credo Mobile can back up their claim of being “America’s greenest mobile phone company”.  Actions like printing bills on 100% post-consumer recycled paper and planting 100 trees for every ton of paper used (enough to generate another ton) prove that Credo is serious about reducing negative effects on the environment. The company also collaborates with The Carbonfund.org Foundation which helps companies, groups and individuals to offset their carbon footprint. Through this partnership, Credo is able to offset not only their emissions from the shipping process, but also the electricity costs from the entire lifetime of a phone. They also make it easy and free for customers to recycle old phones instead of just throwing them out, avoiding putting harmful metals back into the environment. Not surprisingly, in 2009 CREDO Mobile was recognized by the nonprofit Planning and Conservation League as the Environmental Business of the Year.

Along with the services it provides, Credo Mobile has an activist arm that it calls Credo Action. This collection of more than three million activists is responsible for initiatives that fight for protecting biodiversity, moving away from fossil fuels and raising money for research into renewable energy technologies. Credo Action is currently leading the way on important environmental causes like:

  • Reducing carbon emissions by 80% below 1990 levels before 2050, as called for by Nobel Prize-winning scientists
  • Preventing Big Oil’s exploitation of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge
  • Fighting the energy industry’s campaign to greenwash coal, build new coal plants, and mine coal by removing mountaintops
  • Organizing to better protect our vanishing wildlife by strengthening the Endangered Species Act
  • Demanding a national standard on renewable energy and a timetable to achieve it

Obviously, for Credo their commitment to a better world is not just marketing. Since 1985, Credo Mobile has donated more than $70 million total to nonprofits like Mercy Corps and Planned Parenthood including $10 million to environmental groups like Sierra Club and Rainforest Action Network. Credo Mobile has backed up their donations with real activism. Beyond being able to opt out of giving money to a corporation that invests in things you don’t agree with, Credo Mobile gives you the chance to join a network of like-minded people and rally for the causes you see fit.

In the past, they have even offered training in civil disobedience to make sure their members are in the know about what they’re doing, as they did when they rallied 1000 members to participate in a walk against the Keystone Pipeline. More recently, CNN Money explains that, while many of the nation’s wireless companies have been largely silent following the revelation that the government is collecting phone records potentially covering millions of Americans, there is one exception. You bet, Credo Mobile. CEO Michael Kieschnick has been outwardly critical of the issue calling it “vacuum-cleaner approach to our private information.”

Credo Mobile is paving the way for other businesses to operate more sustainably. As being green becomes more mainstream, hopefully more companies like Credo Mobile will emerge. Building a business model around a sense of responsibility for the negative consequences a business creates is something that is new but desperately needed. An interesting question remains as to whether customers care about the causes a company supports. However, while competitors AT&T and WorldCom annually spend millions on television commercials and cold calls to attract customers, Credo Mobile has benefited from a wave of free publicity and word of mouth advertising from a happy and involved customer base which has increased 25% in the last two years.

 

Wobabybasics Greens Your Darlings

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Imagine being green from birth. If everybody could start from a young age, this planet would be in a healthier state.

A China-based company, Wobabybasics, has provided an effortless way for parents and guardians to look after their children and their environment.

Wobabybasics specializes in eco baby wear, and all clothing is created with sustainable materials (only certified chemical-free organic textiles and dyes are used).

Sherry Poon founded the business in 2007 in Shanghai, after the birth of her first child. Her past experiences as an architect and environmentalist have inspired her designs, which are classic and comfortable while maintaining a youthful stylishness.

She says, “Wobabybasics is one of the first – if not the first – brand in China to design and ethically manufacture organic cotton children’s clothes in China, as well as to retail our products to the Chinese market.”

“That said, we are always faced with the never-ending challenge of working with our suppliers to clean up our supply chain, using the least waste and environmental impact in producing our garments, and showing our suppliers the importance and marketability of having a sustainable and ethically-run factory.”

Every year, Wobabybasics releases two collections for young ones, from newborns to children up to eight years old.

In this year’s Fall/Winter collection, they are introducing a new pattern for the What Really Matters Project. For the Spring/Summer 2014 collection, they have plans for new organic gift sets and underwear. This latter collection will be launched on the ABC Kids Show, from 15-18 October.

Among this year’s Fall/Winter collection is the new Snuggle Romper and Snuggle Footie.

WobabaySnuggleThis irresistible piece comes in four classic patterns and is available in sizes from 3 months to 6 years.

Apart from new patterns and colors, the Spring/Summer collection showcases two new product ranges: the organic Unders set and organic gift sets (comprising of the “Get Ready Hospital Gift Set”, “Welcome Home Set”, and “Essentials Set”). All of these products are packaged in reusable cotton bags.

Wobabybasics’s clothes are tailored to the everyday movements of both boys and girls. And not only are they practical, but they also look good on your kids. These items are made ethically in China from 100% organic cotton, certified by IMO under GOTS standards.

Sherry notes that according to a study by OgilvyEarth on China’s green movement, less than 24% of Chinese people believe they have the ability to individually solve environmental problems. However, the Wobabybasics business is well on its way to changing this mentality.

“With our clients, we aim to consistently provide high-quality organic alternatives for parents at reasonable prices. This allows us to not only gain trust in our brand and credentials, but to also educate about the importance of choosing healthier, planet-friendly options,” she says.

Wobabybasics has spread its reach to other environmental areas as well. The company is a founder and organizer of the Eco Design Fair, a grassroots community event which celebrates eco-friendly designers and businesses, and provides the networking opportunity to grow the eco-conscious community in Shanghai. At EDF’s 2013 event, more than 91% of participants and visitors were motivated to lead more sustainable lives.

Wobabybasics products are also on offer in various fashion capitals of the world: New York, Milan, and Tokyo. Additionally, the company supports local artisans and people-friendly production methods.

Says Sherry: “Being green should be a long-term life attitude and by teaching children the important lesson of taking care of the Earth, good habits and responsibilities are instilled that they will be sure to carry with them for the rest of their lives.”