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October 15, 2010

10 “Natural” Products I like in Packaging that hurts our Earth.

It’s time for eco companies to use eco packaging.

Organic(ish) companies in Toxic(ish) containers!

Intro via elephant editor Waylon Lewis:

“The great thing about being broke and not being supported by companies in your own LOHAS demographic is…you can afford to call bull, when warranted. But don’t worry, most of these companies don’t mind too much: they all genuinely want to improve and be responsible to our planet—that is, after all, the definition of a LOHAS company, lest we forget.

Sometimes, it’s just cost-prohibitive to source eco-responsible packaging. Or, the technology doesn’t exist, yet (though, somehow, our grandparents’ generation managed).

So, in the spirit of speaking truth to one’s friends, here’s our Top 10 Wonderful Products in Nasty Packaging List.” ~ Waylon Lewis.

1. Earth Balance! Nice name, horrible (hard to recycle) plastic.

2. Evol Burritos spells “love.” Too bad plastic is forever, and related to carcinogenic stuff. Not very lovey!

3. Silk Soy, and every milk company on earth now uses a plastic cap and little internal thingy that you have to throw away (to get technical). Talk about an unnecessary, un-eco innovation!

4. Justin’s Nut Butter doesn’t last in my kitchen for more than 5 minutes—I eat it up. But the packages last forever, bonus!

5. Rudi’s: gluten-free bread in plastic bags that give the earth a real tummyache.

6. Rush’s Yoga Bowl: this one takes my cake. An unrecyclable plastic-lined container with a plastic bag inside of it. More packaging, please!

*Oh, and it violates the “food rules” of Michael Pollan by 100 ingredients too many.

7. Now, I wouldn’t eat them…but Manduka—and every eco yoga mat—is still coated with stuff that lasts forever (I’ve owned and loved mine for 8 years). Forever’s a long time! To be fair: they are far more biodegradable, natural and eco-responsible than yoga mats of yore. They’re trying.

*Here’s a better alternative—if you’re hardcore (and don’t sweat).

New:Old:

8. Ben & Jerry’s. I’ve loved ’em since I lived in darnit Barnet, Vermont. But, not only do they disingenuously claim to be “All-Natural,” which is like claiming you’re 100% of 50% of something unspecified [Kudos: they just removed All Natural from their containers in order to be more honest! One of the first if not the first companies to do so!] but every pint comes with a plastic seal—that, somehow, is deemed unnecessary by several other ice cream companies.

Question: Is it possible to buy ice cream sans plastic?

9. Fiji? Pick a plastic water bottle company, any company, and they’d make number 9 on our conscious consumer hit list. Only thing worse than plastic containers full of heavy, not-even-that-pure-water shipped needlessly all over the planet is…

10. Pepsi! Winner of the 2011 elephant greenwashing award for their Refresh Campaign—Pepsi is, like Coke and the rest, obesity in a bottle for children and other sweeties. And, again, the bottle…never…goes…away.

Who’d I miss?

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