Pet Age

Making a Difference

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Publisher’s letter as published in the April 2013 issue of Pet Age.

It’s the simple things that make the biggest difference to our planet and to retail stores.

Many people tend to think going green, or changing your store to be greener, is an expensive, time consuming process. We decided to write a story about taking the green initiative, bettering your store and leaving behind a better planet.

I first noticed the beginning of going green when I was traveling to the Interzoo show in Nuremberg, Germany almost 20 years ago. It was amazing to see how much recycling was happening in Germany; it was something I didn’t see as prominent over here in the United States at the time. It was all the little things that you don’t think about when you’re in America.

In the morning I like to go get a cup of coffee, as most of us do, and the wonderful people behind the counter always hand it to me in a plastic cup with a nice holder on it so I don’t burn my hand. Then when I finish with it, I throw it away. It’s something so simple that I never gave a second thought to it.

When I got a cup of coffee in Germany, I was amazed to see it come in a ceramic mug. It forced me to not only sit down and enjoy the cup of coffee but also it allowed the coffee shop to reuse the mug.The company now saves money by not buying cheap cups that are thrown away into our landfills. It’s the very little things your company can do to make our world better and to help your company.

It’s a very slow process, but we are getting closer to a greener planet every day. In the Pet Age office we are a single-stream recycling place. All of our recycling goes into one bin and is sorted out later on. I think this is a great system that stores can do because it takes away the work, and complaints, people may have about recycling and makes it easier than ever. In the employee lunch room there are recycling bins to encourage people to recycle.

Even at my own home, we are doing the single-stream recycling system, and it’s astounding how much we recycle. We fill two huge bins twice a month of just things that are recyclable.

Recently, I went on a tour of Phillips Pet Food & Supplies, where they are taking a lot of steps to go green. They recycle everything from plastic shrink-wrap, to cardboard, even the pallets. After seeing it, I realized that if a company this large, with this many moving parts, can do so much to help our planet, I can do my part and so can our office.

In this month’s cover story you can find details, pointers, advice and everything else you need to start the green process. It’s a long process that will take time, and it won’t happen overnight, but it’s imperative that we all start doing our part to help the world and the environment. I promise you that when you do, you will not only see the benefits in the town or community you live in, but also in your store and your bottom line.

- Craig Rexford

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