The environment has become a hot topic for everyone around the world, particularly for businesses. With natural resources nearing depletion and excessive pollution causing devastating effects on the environment, companies decided to change their manufacturing techniques. These “green” techniques make use of renewable energy, environmentally friendly technology and recyclable packaging. When products are produced this way, they are called sustainable products.
More and more companies are producing sustainable products because of their many economic, social and environmental benefits. These products are also gaining popularity with consumers, who are becoming increasingly conscious of environmental issues. The response to green products indicate that they are not a passing trend.
People – individuals and communities – stand to benefit from sustainable products. Consumers can enjoy the finished products, as well as the health safety that comes with newer, greener manufacturing processes. Companies are becoming more cautious about the way raw materials are collected and how they are processed, in order to reduce or eliminate their footprint on the environment. When the environment is cared for, the quality of life improves.
A greener manufacturing process means that every stage of production – from extracting materials to the disposing of the product- is cleaner and lowers overall pollution. Environment-conscious companies also use renewable energy. The most common types of renewable energy are hydroelectricity, solar power and bio fuel. Other sources include wind, tides and heat. Hydroelectricity is energy generated from water, solar from the sun and bio fuel from living plants.
Older production equipment and technology is being replaced with greener alternatives to produce sustainable products. Manufacturing plants have switched from energy-consuming lighting to energy-smart options. Green chemistry is being adopted in many companies because of its intelligent use of resources and energy. Business strategies today are focused on how to implement and optimize new innovations to reduce pollution.
Sustainable products are produced in a closed-loop system. Instead of manufacturers extracting raw materials, they use recycled materials to make new products. When new products expire, they can be put back into the cycle and serve as raw materials for other products. Any existing waste is not toxic and can be safely thrown away.
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When sustainable products first entered the market, they were believed to be inefficient and expensive. Today, these products meet the performance standards of non-sustainable products and are just as affordable. For some businesses, manufacturing sustainable products has proven to be more cost-effective than conventional techniques.
There are many great sustainable products on the market today. PUMA, a reputable sportswear company, has launched the InCycle range of footwear, active wear and sports accessories manufactured through green processes. BMW, a world renowned car manufacturer, also has its own line of electric cars that include the i8 sportscar and urban i3.
The advent of sustainable products has changed the way manufacturers, individuals and communities view the environment. The product’s life cycle – from sourcing raw materials until the end of its life – is economical, safe and environmentally friendly. Sustainable products are competent, affordable and all-natural.