Guilt-Free Ice Cream!

Hate Mondays?

Imagine getting ice cream after a long, dreadful Monday. Imagine it being vegan Haagen Dazs ice cream. You know the kind that tastes even better than the rich, melt-in-your mouth, yummy tasting normal ice cream we all crave and love? Better yet, imagine the Haagen Dazs ice cream in a reusable stainless-steel container delivered straight to your house! With that kind of service, who would ever dare to leave the house?

Well, folks, this dream can become a reality in New York City or Paris. By this spring, Loop has teamed up with major consumer product companies such as Tide, Crest, Nestle (producers of Haagen Dazs), The Body Shop, and others to begin one of the largest zero-waste initiatives ever. While recycling is great, it is impossible to keep up with how many times people throw away single-use items.

Loop’s zero-waste solution is to deliver a large range of products that are less harmful to the environment. From toothpaste to cleaning supplies to laundry detergent to ice cream, the Loop will have it covered. Just like Amazon, the items you purchased will be delivered to your doorstep by UPS. However, instead of cardboard boxes, engineers are designing reusable tote bags that are designed for durability. Once you have used up the products, just send it back and Loop will automatically replenish whatever you used. Loop also uses stainless steel containers in the process that are cleaned, sterilized, and then reused for the next customer.

This innovative packaging will have a 50-75% better impact than other conventional alternatives.

"We need foundational changes. Our version of the foundational change is: How do we solve for disposability at the root cause…”

Tom Szaky, CEO and co-founder of TerraCycle

This analysis is conducted by TerraCycle, a major recycling company that works with Loop’s supply chain to find sustainable and cost effective ways of reducing costs and pollution. This first step will create monumental change away from a disposable consumer society to a more eco-conscientious one. Simply put, by Tom Szaky, Loop and other corporate partners are changing the world from “disposable to durable”.

By 2050, plastic will outweigh the fish in our oceans.

Between TerraCycle and Loop’s zero-waste initiative, the top 10 largest plastic polluters are working to transition towards a zero-waste environment by 2025. This is reminiscent of the 1900s when milk bottles were deliver to the doorsteps. Why not go back to a similarly effective model? With Loop, they have designed it in an effective way for the modern world. Profitability and environmental stewardship are not mutually exclusive.

Not only are the 21st century environmental stewardship practices for corporations more targeted and have the ability to be better than ever, but your delicious Haagen Dazs ice cream will stay colder for longer. Be sure to thank that stainless steel double layered container and enjoy! 

Go ahead and reserve a spot to be apart of this growing, guilt-free trend! Get your spoons ready because I know I am! Mmm.

Micro-Plastics & Jeans

Everyone loves a good pair of jeans.

In 2013, Levi’s created their “Waste Less” collection. In their collection, 20% of the jeans are comprised of recycled water bottles and post-consumer plastic. They state that each pair of jeans, use an average of three to eight plastic water bottles. Since their launch, the company has used 11.9 million recycled bottles for various products.

Levi Strauss & Co. is an environmental leader in the clothing industry. They were committed to both (1) reducing their companies water footprint due to growing water constraints for cotton production, and (2) decreasing their role in the buildup of non-biodegradable plastics.

Despite recycling infrastructure that exists in order to facilitate the recycling of these bottles, according to the Container Recycling Institute, 86% of plastic water bottles used in the US become garbage that ends up in landfills throughout the country. Considering that approximately 60 million plastic water bottles are used every day in the US, we can assume that nearly 18,834,000,000 end up in the landfill each year. Each bottle can take up to 700 years to decompose.

Hannah Ellsbury at Ban The Bottle

Yesterday, I went shopping at Marshall’s and I was excited to make a green consumer choice. With a little research, I was able to help prevent excess plastic bottles from ending up in our landfills. This isn’t to say that the system is perfect — but it is a step in the right direction.

In fact, Madewell closes the jean recycling loop with their Blue Jeans Go Green project. Here, they collect old denim donations and produce housing insulation. Between these two companies, buying denim made out of water bottles that will later be turned into housing insulation sounds perfect.

However, if the denim is no longer 100% cotton then it isn’t biodegradable or benign to our waters. This denim like other synthetic fabrics — such as nylon, polyester, and spandex — contain micro-plastics. When we wash our clothes, these plastics leak into our water systems. These micro-plastics are too small for standard filtration systems because they can be as tiny as 5 millimeters in length. Also, if they leak into our water systems, they also leak into our oceans when we wash our clothes.

The UN News reports that there are as many as 51 trillion micro-plastic particles that litter our oceans. To put that in perspective, that is 500 times all the stars in our galaxy, but as micro-plastics in the sea. So, maybe the answer is not recycling, but reducing and eliminating unnecessary use of plastic, especially water bottles.