Three small “green” businesses offering green pet and animal products in New York, California and North Carolina, today were announced as the winners of Green America’s “People & Planet Award.” The winners of the $5,000 prizes are The Honest Kitchen in San Diego, California, and Front Yard Coop in Asheville, North Carolina. The grand prize winner, Full Circle Feed from Syracuse, New York, will receive $10,000 in recognition of having received the highest number of votes.
The People & Planet Award recognizes innovative small U.S. businesses that integrate environmental and social considerations into their strategies and operations. The winners were selected by the public during a month-long online voting period.
“When we talk about benefiting people and the planet, it’s important not to forget how animals play a role,” said Fran Teplitz, Green America’s executive co-director. “Some business practices, including ones commonly used by the agriculture industry, put profits over corporate responsibility. Pet and animal products that are environmentally friendly and produced ethically are just as important today as ever.”
The winning companies are:
* Full Circle Feed, Syracuse, New York: Full Circle Feed believes dogs should enjoy food that’s good enough for humans. The company’s treats are made with vegetables, meats, fruits and breads from restaurant buffets that were prepared but not served. The result is a healthy, delicious, environmentally-sustainable dog treat! For too long, our society has disposed of billions of tons of extra food, which Full Circle Feed now “upcycles” into high quality food.
“Full Circle Feed will use the funds to set up a more environmentally friendly production process and drying method. In particular, instead of using electricity or natural gas we plan to use waste heat or biogas generated from anaerobic digestion to bake our dog biscuits,” said Michael Amadori, founder of Full Circle Feed. “This will greatly reduce our ecological footprint and give us the most sustainable dog treats on the market! We are very grateful to Green America for the recognition and being selected in the People & Planet award.”
* The Honest Kitchen, San Diego, California: The Honest Kitchen offers 100 percent free-range, antibiotic-free and sustainably raised chicken and turkey. Only wild-caught, MSC-certified fish and non-GMO produce and organic seeds and grains are used. All of The Honest Kitchen’s manufacturing takes place in North America to reduce transportation and carbon emissions.
“It’s a huge honor to have our commitments to sustainable and humane ingredient sourcing and other environmental efforts recognized in this way,” said Lucy Postins, founder of The Honest Kitchen. “We’re working towards furthering our goals in these areas, including the integration of free-range eggs into our supply chain and increasing our usage of grass fed beef, as well as other initiatives for packaging reduction and recycling. We’ll be using our prize to make a direct impact at our home office, by building a vegetable garden in our outdoor space and adding office kitchen composting facilities to help further reduce our environmental pawprint.”
* Front Yard Coop, Asheville, North Carolina: The Front Yard Coop is the world’s first solar-powered, self-propelled chicken coop. While chicken coops are a booming business and a growing segment of the DIY community, the Front Yard Coop is unique, offering technological innovations, solar power and contemporary design.
“Winning this award will especially help with new product initiatives as we continue to grow in our new home of North Carolina,” said Peter Zander, founder of Front Yard Coop. “The small homestead movement is particularly vigorous in the Asheville region, and we hope that the Front Yard Coop will be a helpful product for the new age homesteader. The front yard coop was created from equal parts passion, creativity, determination and experimentation. Follow your dreams and wherever possible live what you believe.”
The theme for the next round of Green America’s award will be announced in 2017.
The businesses that the public vote on are determined by public nominations and an expert panel of judges: Gigi Abbadie, Aveda; Justin Conway, Calvert Foundation; Tess O’Brien, Clean Power Perks, Jennifer Snyder, Clif Bar; Erlene Howard, Collective Resource, Inc., Dale Luckwitz, Naturepedic; Jonathan Reinbold, Organic Valley; Martin Wolf, Seventh Generation; and Andrew Korfhage and Fran Teplitz, both of Green America.