At Summer House Soaps we take our responsibility to the environment seriously. We know our business operates in a fragile local ecosystem - the Cape and Islands - and also in a complex, troubled global environment. We do everything we can to be earth-friendly in our material sourcing and manufacturing processes.
We are currently undergoing the review process for Cape and Islands Green Level 1 Certification.
We also support a number of local environmental organizations with direct or in-kind contributions, including Barnstable Lands Trust.
RECYCLE, REUSE, REDUCE
We recycle as much as humanly possible: paper, cardboard, plastic, glass, and metals.
We have reduced soap waste to almost nothing in the past three years by 1. resizing our molds to reduce soap trimmings, 2. putting 90% of the trimmings into our popular bargain bags. 3. using smaller scraps not suitable for Bargain Bags in our new Beach Glass soap. The Beach Glass soap also uses up liquid pot scrapings that were once thrown out.
We donate scrap from our handcrafted wrapping papers to local artists and crafters.
The plastic buckets our oils come in are donated to local farmers, who use them for a variety of purposes, including sale of composted manure.
We pack our shipments in second-hand packing materials (primarily Styrofoam packing peanuts) that have been donated to us by local businesses.
We are working to reduce the amount of energy it takes to create our products and transport them to you. Employees are encouraged to be mindful of energy consumption. Our manufacturing area has been audited four times in ten years by Cape Light Compact, and each time we've tightened up our space.
100% of the lights in the business area are now fluorescent. We replaced the heating system with an energy efficient model in 2004.
On Cape Cod, water is an especially precious and limited commodity. Nothing gets dumped down the drain at SHS except a small amount of sudsy water from washing pans and utensils - less than the amount of generated by an average household. We use environmentally -friendly cleaning products whenever possible.
The gardens where we grow some of our herbs are managed organically, as are the plantings and lawn around the building.
We take great care when sourcing our raw materials. Whenever possible, we purchase environmentally sustainable materials.
Our wrapping papers come from sustainably-grown mulberry plants. They're produced in Thailand by village women who are able to earn income while staying at home with their children. When ordering essential oils, we opt for "eco-certified" products when they are available.
We purchase 100% recycled copy paper, paper towels, and resale bags.
WE ARE A WORK IN PROGRESS
We know we're not perfect. As a small business, we don't always have the ability to live up to our highest aspirations, but we keep our goals in mind, and each year we get a little better.
We are constantly reviewing our choices with the earth in mind. We welcome any input or questions about the process.
|WE ARE PASSIONATE ABOUT NATURE, CREATIVITY, SPIRIT, AND COMMUNITY|