Everyday solutions to celebrate Earth Day

Earth Day came and went on April 22 and I procrastinated in writing this blog mainly because I am on the slow path of recovering from chronic over-commitments.

Despite my limited efforts to have a more engaged relationship with the planet, I was relieved when I had the opportunity last week to revisit the philosophy and values statement that I created for Infinity nearly five years ago. I did so at that time to attract people to work alongside me who were on the same page. The sections related to sustainability on my one-page statement go like this:

Philosophy behind Infinity Point 3. I want to keep sustainability at the forefront – this means having products from natural materials, reusing and recycling whenever possible.

Philosophy behind Infinity Point 2. Supporting and growing the local economy is important to me. This means having diverse products and services, being flexible, and working with local vendors and artisans, whenever possible.

Being Environmentally Conscious:
Encourage people to bring in their own bags or avoid giving a bag if there are only 2-3 items. However, if the customer asks for a bag, give them one. I offer used grocery bags (when we have any left) as the first choice for bags. While bagging, tell customers that you are using a recycled bag. (Ask them to bring in their grocery bags for reuse).
I accept used inks, toners, batteries and recycle them.
I recycle paper and cardboard as much as possible.
Bubble wrap (that comes in with orders) can be offered to customers for no charge.

Now, local artisans and producers are not just important to the local economy but reduce shipping of poorly made and poorly grown goods from long distances.

In May 2017 we acted to phase out the use of plastic bags (and we’re not there) by charging for them. At that time, Home Hardware eliminated plastic bags and IGA started charging for plastic bags. With multiple businesses working to reduce the consumption of plastic, I am excited to report that majority of people bring in their bags. A lot more after we started charging for bags.

The consumption of D-Dutchmen Dairy’s milk in glass bottles is pretty steady and increasing. It thrills me that people are committed to buying dairy products from a small farm in Enderby that is sold in reusable containers.

I stay hopeful when I drop off another big load of cardboard and paper recycling at the Valemount Transfer Station and Clayton tells me that he sees a steady increase in recycling brought in by the younger generations.

In the past six months, we’ve been adding more products to eliminate disposables from your life. In addition to bolga baskets, dryer balls, the Diva Cup, natural bristle toothbrushes and laundry detergent in cardboard containers, we now sell: beautiful pottery travel mugs, beeswax wraps
(again beautiful), reusable sandwich bags, steel straws for smoothies and juices and silicone lids for bowls and glasses, to name a few.

We’ve got an excellent promotion on most of these products with the chance to be a proud owner of a (or another) beautiful handmade bolga basket.

Whether you believe in climate change or not, I encourage you to consider what Infinity offers. You not only simplify your life but also add more meaning when you shop local, knowing you’re making more connections to people working in your community and encouraging people to grow food and create unique gifts that you can’t buy out of town or on Amazon!

Visit Infinity often – where everyday is Earth Day!

Rashmi Narayan

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