1 October 2008 — Issue #48 Editor: Michael J. Ross
During these economically difficult times, PristinePlanet.com would like to salute all of our members who are persevering in making their entrepreneurial ideas a reality, despite the obstacles. In this special member appreciation issue of the newsletter, we focus the spotlight on several new members of our community. Welcome aboard!
"Free Your Body, Free the Earth" is the slogan of Free Market Organics, and reflects the personal philosophy of Amelia Royko Maurer, who founded the company in January 2008, in Evansville, Wisconsin. Amelia aims to provide customers with well-researched, toxin-free, green goods of the highest quality and safety, just as she does in making a home for her own family — the sorts of products that can help people live healthy and low-stress lives, and avoid the diseases of modern living, including cancer. Her Web site offers a variety of apparel, body care items, kitchen items, children's toys, and writing paper, as well as gift certificates, special sales, eco-related hyperlinks, recipes, and more. Explore the world of Free Market Organics, and help free your body and the earth from unhealthy toxins.
Many parents nowadays are striving to raise their children in a more healthful, conscious, and sustainable manner — partly through making lifestyle decisions closer to nature. These include opting for baby and children's products that are more natural, eco-friendly, and non-toxic. Generation Orange is dedicated to making it easier than ever for this new generation of parents to search for and purchase products that are not only healthier, but stylish and inspiring. The firm was created by husband and wife Prashanth Mysoor (CFO) and Shital Mehta (CEO), after the birth of their first son, in January 2007. Located in San Francisco, California, Generation Orange is already impressing customers with its diverse range of natural products, the high level of customer service (including a personalized note from Shital with every order), and the valuable guidance of health experts, including well-respected pediatricians.
With more people choosing to grow their own vegetables and other foods, the garden industry is flourishing, and individuals are seeking expertise, ideas, and top-quality products from industry insiders, such as Matt Silvern. A veteran of the wholesale garden industry, Matt was working independently at one point with a consortium of world-class artisans, craftsmen, designers, and other entrepreneurs. During this time, he noticed growing interest from people wishing to purchase his products directly. In 2007, he attended the Green Business Conference and the Chicago Green Festival, which inspired him to create a retail business later that year. Based in Madison, Wisconsin, Goods for the Garden offers a unique collection of exceptional products for the garden enthusiast. Matt's company is also good for the Earth, aiming for 100 percent carbon neutrality through offsets, and continuing to support Co-op America and 1% For the Planet, and donating a portion of every order to botanical gardens and other Earth-friendly organizations. In addition, the company raises funds for the Potters for Peace organization, in Nicaragua, by donating 100% of all profits from the sale of Nicaraguan pottery to their water filter program.
For some eco-entrepreneurs, there are particularly memorable moments that convinced them to start their own green businesses. Such was the case for Eric and Angie Allen, who had chartered a sailboat in the British Virgin Islands for a family vacation. While their vessel lay at anchor in a lovely bay, a bag of garbage floated past. Another key moment occurred on a summer day, when Eric was washing their sailboat and rinsing it down with a conventional plastic bucket tied to a piece of line. The bucket accidentally went over the side, and Eric realized that he had unintentionally added a piece of plastic to the ecosystem, possibly forever. Eric and Angie became determined to do what they could to help boaters enjoy their time on the water without causing any damage, and thus was born GreenBoatStuff.com, founded in February 2007, in the city of Spokane, located in the eastern part of Washington — an area known for its lakes and boating opportunities. Their firm may be the only one truly dedicated to providing environmentally friendly boating products, with full disclosure of ingredients. So boaters can wash their craft — with a biodegradable canvas bucket, for instance — without falling prey to the "greenwashing" of supposedly eco-conscious marine supply stores.
Despite humanity's technological progress over the centuries, we generally enjoyed more health-promoting diets thousands of years ago, than we do today. The same is true of our domesticated pets, which in primitive times shared an optimal diet of raw foods, including vegetables. Several decades ago, our so-called progress culminated in humans eating TV dinners and other junk food, and their dogs and cats eating dry non-foods composed of grains, fillers, and the output of meat rendering plants. Fortunately, we now live in an era during which people are becoming more conscious of the foods they are feeding themselves, their families, and their pets. Joining in this trend is The Honest Kitchen, founded in 2002 in Pacific Beach, San Diego, California, by Lucy Postins, who has an extensive background in animal nutrition, anatomy, physiology, complementary therapies, pet food manufacturing, and new product development. This combination of skills resulted in her developing dehydrated raw pet food, which is now available to pet owners online, and allows them to create natural meals for their pets conveniently, without any cooking or freezing. The firm has been awarded "Dog Food of the Year" twice, and also received top marks from customers, who, in unsolicited and inspiring testimonials, express their joy in finding much better food for their pets — oftentimes reversing countless health problems and greatly increasing the levels of energy of their companion animals.
With the growing interest in environmentally responsible shopping, far too many conventional retailers are abusing terms such as "green" and "natural" to promote products that are anything but. This is especially problematic in the realm of cosmetics, which, unlike food products, are not required by law to list their ingredients. People must therefore be especially alert in seeking out truly natural cosmetics. Fortunately, they are not alone in this quest, because husband and wife team Obie Poasa and Sarah Remington share this same passion for a natural and organic lifestyle, including raw diets of whole foods, and only the healthiest skin care products, in their own lives. Motivated by a strong interest in developing a green business, as well as educating the public on the dangers of toxic ingredients in conventional beauty products, Obie and Sarah developed Posh Organix, which aims to become the premier online retailer of natural and organic bath products, cosmetics, and other beauty supplies. Located in Boulder, Colorado, the couple founded the company in September 2007, and launched their Web site in January 2008. In addition to an expanding lineup of products, the site is planned to have an ingredient glossary, allowing visitors to learn more about both toxic and healthy ingredients. This is consistent with the company's much-appreciated policy of only carrying brands that clearly list all ingredients. Obie and Sarah are also committed to minimizing the environmental impact of their enterprise, and partnering only with companies that are likewise environmentally and socially responsible.
The decision to create an environmentally focused business can develop over time, as the founder sees growing evidence of humanity's negative impact on the planet, and alternatives that customers can utilize to minimize their own impact. Such was the case for Debby de Moulpied, who over the years has seen dramatic and troubling environmental problems of her city — Concord, New Hampshire — including changes in climate, bird migration, and even air quality alerts. While searching online for recycling containers, she realized that the well-developed green industry was largely unrepresented in her area. Teaming up with an eco-savvy friend, she launched Real Green Goods, an earth-friendly department store that offers an extremely wide range of green products in 17 categories. These items are fair trade and US made, oftentimes manufactured from recycled glass and metal. Clothing and textiles are made from certified organic cotton and wool, as well as bamboo, hemp, and cruelty-free silk. The company treasures its customers, who frequently note how much they appreciate the company and how much they have learned from their products.
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