Successful Business...More Than Words

This is a writing sample from Scripted writer David Schulz

Successful businesses listen to the consumer. In order to build a relationship in which both parties benefit, the business must show an awareness of the consumer's needs. If a consumer approves of the positive changes a business makes in the production or distribution of a product, then that relationship continues to grow. It takes more than words to convince the consumer.

Many Humboldt County businesses do a good job. In fact, they do more than a good job. They have gone one step further than necessary to ensure that the good relationship they already have with their customers will continue to strengthen. Many have listened to the public's demands to increase efficiency, and in response have invited the active participation of community members. As socially and environmentally aware people, Humboldt County residents contribute in many ways. They give ideas, money, and trash to the companies they like the most. They may not know they are giving, but they are.

Directly or indirectly, we contribute to the success of our local businesses. We contribute ideas when we talk about ways we can make our world a better place to be. We contribute money when we buy locally produced products. We contribute trash just about every time we walk by a garbage can.

Local businesses have found that ideas + trash = money. Recycling is something everyone can get involved in. Everyone can take this idea, combine it with some trash, and make some money. Just about everything we use and discard can be used again. Some waste is never seen or used by the consumer, yet it, too, has a use. Recycling is an effort to build consumer trust, make this world a better place to live in, and (let's be honest) make some money.

The following businesses are proud to be a part of this effort.

The Pacific Lumber Company

  • Produces enough steam and electricity burning waste wood in the company-owned town of Scotia to power two sawmills, their main office, 272 residences, and all of the businesses. The rest is sold to Pacific Gas and Electric.
  • Diverts all of the boiler ash from their cogeneration power plant out of the county landfill. It is now:
  • 1. Spread on agricultural land.
  • 2. Used in an experimental potting soil mixture.
  • 3. Shipped to Calgon Carbon where it is made into activated carbon used by municipal water systems.

Humboldt Printing

  • Separates and sells their computer paper, plastic wrap, cardboard, and metal. As a result, they have reduced the amount of garbage they send to the landfill down to one load a month.
  • Uses soy-based ink which saves oil and provides work for soybean farmers.
  • Filters and recycles solvents.
  • Saves money recycling ink, thereby reducing the amount that must be destroyed from 7,000 lbs. to 900 lbs. The remaining ink is worth $12,000.
  • Accepts newspaper and coated paper from Fortuna residents for recycling.
  • Saves $70,000 every year in transportation costs by hauling their own coated and uncoated waste paper directly to Smurfid Corporation in Oregon. Smurfid Corp., is a paper mill which makes recycled paper. Humboldt Printing buys 50 percent of their paper from Smurfid Corp.

Louisiana Pacific Corporation

  • Runs a curbside recycling program in the LP-owned town of Samoa.
  • Saves electricity. Already, five of LP's plants have been converted to use energy-efficient lighting. They are now using 20,000 Mhz where they once used 60,000 Mhz and 90 watts to as little as 60 watts where they once used 178 watts.
  • Recycles old pallets and material from demolition sites for use in making particleboard. The particleboard made in Oroville is 20 percent recycled material.
  • Works with Mendocino County to close landfills. LP recently finished the first complete closure of a landfill ever permitted in California. This means they went through it and removed:
  • 1. 20-year-old compost used to cap a Mendocino County municipal landfill.
  • 2. Rocks which were then sorted, washed, and sold to gravel companies.
  • 3. Wood to be used as fuel.
  • Produces chlorine-free paper.
  • Uses branches and tree tips that would otherwise go to a landfill to make oriented strand board or wafer wood.

Yakima Products Incorporated

  • Recycles the plastic bags they use.
  • Saves the Styrofoam peanuts used in packaging. Another company collects them for reuse.
  • Uses recycled paper to print their instructions on.

Neilsen Ace Hardware Feed and Store

  • Recycles cardboard.
  • Reuses plastic milk jugs for kerosene refills.

All of these companies were recognized last year by the California Integrated Waste Management Board's Waste Reduction Award Program. The W.R.A.P. award not only recognizes these companies' efforts, it encourages them to continue finding new ways to make our world a better place to live in. Many thanks go to these and other businesses who participate in this endeavor. Good Job!

If you have a business or work for a business that you feel deserves some recognition for its effort, please send me the detailed information care of Access. I know you're out there!

Written by:

David Schulz
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David is an experienced content creator located in the remote northeastern corner of California. His diverse experiences in everything from agricultural fieldwork to software design contribute to a unique perspective that he applies toward helping visionaries reach their goals. He has written code for Internet startup companies and coached winning robotics teams. For five years, he edited and produced a quarterly school district newsletter. His efforts combine technology and art to elevate and improve the social condition.
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