Author: Elizabeth Shoch

Walking the Walk with our Sustainable Conferences

At GreenBlue, we all do our best to “walk the sustainability walk” in our daily lives at home and at the office. In the past we have even had intra-staff challenges that involved sustainability actions like bringing our own containers to coffee shops and lunch spots for take-out food, eating more fruits and vegetables, collecting compostable waste in the office, and spending more time outside … More

Spotted: Aveda’s In-Store Message on Sustainable Packaging

I was at my local Aveda hair salon recently and spotted this shelf advertisement – touting not their product, but their packaging. Kudos to Aveda for making packaging sustainability part of their overall brand message! Coincidentally, we SPC staff have been talking around the office about the importance of brandowners telling their packaging sustainability story in a highly visible way as part of a good … More

Saving the Box Your Apple Came In…and Other Weird Habits

Knowing I work on sustainable packaging issues, a friend recently mentioned the phenomenon of people saving their Apple packaging. Like, saving it FOR YEARS. Initially I dismissed the idea, but when I thought about the people I know who have Macs, I realized it’s an actual habit not seen in PC-users. My in-laws, who otherwise religiously get rid of everything, still have their Mac box. … More

Changing Behavior to Reduce Food Waste in Restaurants

This post-Thanksgiving NPR segment discusses the massive amount of food waste produced by restaurants and their customers. Though the National Restaurant Association, the Grocery Manufacturers Association, and the Food Marketing Institute have formed the Food Waste Reduction Alliance to tackle this problem, they admit they still have a long way to go. According to the report, a half pound of food waste is created for every meal served in … More

Making A Green Choice at the Pittsburgh Sheraton

This past September, we held the Sustainable Packaging Coalition’s 2012 Fall Members Meeting at the Sheraton Station Square hotel in Pittsburgh. Upon checking in, I was informed about Sheraton’s “Make a Green Choice” program. To participate in this program, I would be required to hang a special tag on my doorknob each day I wanted to participate and agree to skip all housekeeping for that … More

A Common Vision for Sustainability Keeps SPC Members Passionate About the Future

A few weeks ago, nearly 200 Sustainable Packaging Coalition (SPC) members came together for the annual 2012 SPC Fall Members Meeting. While the Fall Meeting has always been a chance for members to roll up their sleeves and shape SPC project work, this year’s meeting in Pittsburgh also gave members a chance to step back and think about the bigger picture: the future direction of … More

Surfing is Valuable: The Perfect Wave as an Ecosystem Service

The numerous services we receive from nature don’t typically come with a price tag that’s easy to see. Unfortunately, without that price tag, our economic system makes it difficult to appreciate these ecosystem services or take them into account when a competing business opportunity comes up. Wetlands and mangrove forests provide us with (free!) flood control and nurseries for fish and crabs. Vegetation near streams … More

Salmon Fishing, Strawberry Queens, Food Waste…and Packaging

I recently attended and spoke at the Sustainable Packaging Symposium in Houston, Texas. One of the major themes of the meeting was the topic of food waste, which makes up a hefty 14% by weight of the US municipal solid waste stream (2009 EPA estimate). Food waste is an issue where food manufacturers, grocery retailers, and restaurants, in particular, feel especially responsible and engaged. The … More

Recycle Runway – Red Carpet Ready?

I was connecting through the Atlanta airport last week and noticed the Recycle Runway special exhibit as I moved between terminals. Atlanta is the country’s busiest airport, with over 43 million passenger boardings in 2010, so I imagine a lot of you have seen the exhibit as well. Recycle Runway is the work of artist and environmental educator Nancy Judd. It features clothing—dresses, coats, shoes, and … More