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Backpacker Magazine –

Green Guide Exclusive Online Materials

Information on 19 more "green" companies and an interview with Big Agnes's Bill Gamber

by: The Backpacker Editors

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On a pound for pound basis, production of Bio-PDO consumes about 40% less energy than product of its petrochemical-based counterpart. On a pound for pound basis, production of Sorona using Bio-PDO consumes 40% less energy than nylon. On a pound for pound basis, production of Sorona results in 50% less greenhouse gas emissions than petrochemical based nylon.

This company's lights are powered by highly efficient monocrystalline solar panels. It uses environmentally friendly Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) rechargable batteries. 6 hours of full sun provides 20+ hours of brilliant white L.E.D. lighting. Equinox gear is made in Pennsylvania, saving energy through conservative shipping practices and recycling boxes for product shipping as well as combining shipments allowing for reduced fuel consumption. Equinox products incorporate limited packaging allowing for less waste. Hang tags and paper packaging are printed with water soluble soy inks on 100% post consumer recycled paper.

Gregory is working to eliminate all PVC and other harmful materials from its global product line. This year, Gregory eliminated PVC from its Response backpacks. Gregory recently began using high-performance textiles that can be recycled and reused. In February 2008, Gregory relocated to Sacramento, one of the most sustainable cities in the nation. The move reflects Gregory's values while allowing it to deliver strategically designed products and provide employees the opportunity to commute using light rail, bike or on foot. Gregory's new, renovated office space was created by LEED-accredited architects and designers with reclaimed wood, recycled carpets, office furniture, cubicles and other structural elements from companies making green and/or recycled content products. The space uses natural light to reduce energy usage.

Honey Stinger
Based in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, Honey Stinger supports the use of alternative energy sources and obtains approximately 51% of the energy for its office space and warehouse from a wind-generated power company. The company's consumer catalogs and marketing materials are printed using a percentage of recycled, post consumer waste paper products and environmentally conscious inks. Honey Stinger works to protect the environment by reusing or recycling corrugated boxes, paper, cans and bottles, and encouraging bicycle and car pool commuting.

Annual environmental audits, waste-minimizing manufacturing processes, and recyclable packaging augment this lightweight-shoe maker's internal recycling and pro-commuter business practices.

Kayland is investigating switching to recycled content paper for packaging and/or catalogs, using recycled content outsoles, using environmental materials like PrimaLoft Eco, which contains 50% post-consumer waste without compromising its insulating properties and replacing lining materials with performance properties derived from coconut shells.

Mary Janes Kitchen
Founded by former forest ranger and organic farmer MaryJane Butters, this backpacking food company has 60 organic products. All instant foods all come in an EcoPouch, a container that triples as cooking pot, dish, and campfire fuel.

This outdoor-maintenance company makes everything from water repellants to boot cleaners, and all are intended to extend the life of outdoor gear. Most McNett formulas are either biodegradable or environmentally benign and we are researching new green technology all the time. McNett uses the highest available post consumer waste content in its bottles and packaging, and soy based inks on labels and blister cards. McNett proudly supports Sierra Club and Appalachian Mountain Club, and other organizations dedicated to preserving the environment and introducing people to the outdoors.

All of Montrail's catalogs and sales material are printed on post-consumer recycled paper with soy based ink, and it is in the process of removing all paper products from shoeboxes. Over the next year this shoemaker will eliminate approximately 34,000 pounds of waste from shoeboxes. Montrail is a proud member of the Conservation Alliance, a non-profit organization of outdoor businesses whose mission is to support grassroots citizen-action groups and their efforts to protect wild and natural areas.

Of the Earth
Founded in 1992 OTE is a leading developer and supplier of environmentally sustainable fabrics and clothing. The company supplies organic fiber, organic yarn, organic textiles and organic apparel .New certified organic fabrics continue to be introduced 2005 (hemp, linen, ramie, bamboo, soy, silk, wool, merino, cashmere and yak).

Pittards PLC
Pittards is one of the first tanneries in the world to achieve ISO 14,000 certification to the International Environmental Management standard in the year 2000.

The company heats with local scrap wood, burned in an excess air, extreme high heat burner to boiler, for clean non-polluting chimney output. This place is likely the best insulated of all businesses or homes. In 1994 it switched to thin silicone sealed fabric for all of its tents eliminating the bad solvents used in urethane coatings, increasing durability and strength of tents, and decreasing tent weight. It uses large diameter thin wall ultra high strength aluminum alloy that reduces amount of aluminum used, (and the electrical energy to make it. "Fuzzy Stuff" VB fabric is made with heat bonding instead of solvent based adhesive bonding, thus eliminating release of solvents to the air.

Sun BD Corporation
The Tulsi-Hybrid Solar Cooking Oven combines FREE solar energy cooking with the backup reliability of conventional electric power. The oven: eliminates the consumption of expensive propane fuels; uses pollution free solar energy; is easy to use, portable, and sets up in seconds; is especially designed to enhance any solar cooking chef, environmentally conscious persons, campers and others who want enjoy the latest in outdoor solar cooking ovens.

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