02 October 2007

Target... Selling Organic Bed Sheets & Bamboo Kitchenware?!

shared by raychelle:

Today I went to Target and several things caught my eye - organic bed sheets and bamboo kitchenware. Like a young'un in a candy store, I giddly bought these, but I just had to go home and make sure I wasn't dreaming...

From the Target website - http://sites.target.com/site/en/corporate/page.jsp?contentId=PRD03-001095

"We recognize that we have a responsibility—as team members, as a company, and as global citizens—to minimize our environmental footprint. So we've sought ways to reduce waste, use energy more efficiently, and operate more sustainably. We're proud of our accomplishments and we're continually improving, one store at a time.

One way we're improving the quality of our buildings and reducing their impact on the environment is by following the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) Green Building Rating System for some new Target stores.

Everything from raw materials to packaged products as a valuable asset to protect. Through our comprehensive recycling and reuse programs, we've cut our waste by 70%. We're encouraged by our success and continue to seek out opportunities to expand our programs.

In 2006, Target:

Reused 385 million garment hangers and recycled 2.1 million pounds of plastic and 153,000 pounds of metal from broken hangers.
Recycled 911.1 million pounds of cardboard, the largest portion by weight of our recycled materials.
Recycled 4.3 million pounds of shrink wrap at our distribution centers.
Recycled 10,400 pounds of rechargeable batteries collected from guests. This program provides a safe and convenient option for Target guests to dispose of batteries containing hazardous components.
Recycled or refurbished 47,600 broken shopping carts.

Target puts tremendous focus on designing and operating energy-efficient stores and facilities. We also track and report our annual greenhouse-gas emissions, as part of our involvement in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's voluntary Climate Leaders program. Here are some ways that Target conserves energy:

Energy-efficient fluorescent lamps are used throughout our stores, a first in the retail industry. We are currently changing our sales floor lighting from a three-lamp to a two-lamp fixture, which will reduce our energy consumption by 22 percent.
Motion-sensor lighting in our stockrooms keep areas lit only when needed.
Energy use for lighting, refrigeration equipment, heating and cooling is carefully monitored to be as efficient as possible.
When economically feasible, energy is purchased from renewable sources.
We are in the process of switching our exterior neon signs to LED, which will increase energy efficiency by 78 percent.
Four stores in California draw 20 percent of their annual electricity needs from their own rooftop solar-panel systems. In 2007, Target will retrofit 14 more California stores to operate on solar power.
Since the early 1990s, we have used white membranes on our store roofs, which reflect the sun's heat, helping to reduce the heat-island effect of the store."

I'm impressed! Honestly I've never been for big-name, sprawling corporations... but when they go GREEN, should we support them? Some SuperTarget stores are now selling local organic fruits and vegetables. I've always believed we should support those little stores on the street - the mom and pop stores, the farmer's market, etc, but now with Target (and Wal-Mart) jumping on the Green bandwagon.. what do we do as consumers? What do you think?

When I watched Julia Butterfly Hill give her presentation in 2003, what she repeatedly emphasized was our power as consumers. As consumers, we can make all the difference in the world we want to see. We control the flow of our money and our money influences the supply and demand. Buying things that aren't good for the Earth, we increase the number of products that damages Earth, and when we buy things that are good for Earth, we increase those products (and make them cheaper for many others who want to purchase them as well).

Your Thoughts on Target?


  1. I still have not forgive myself for missing Julia Butterfly Hill's presentation! Grr.

    Everyday, we find ourselves encouraging people and companies to go green. If a company goes green, we should support them in every way because they are making an effort to become green.

  2. big corporations going green is great, but i'd be more inclined to support them if they also had good workplace practices.

  3. cass & shira, i agree with you both...

    here's an example...Walmart is going green, yes, imagine! they're getting into the organic food business now - , but does that excuse their terrible treatment of their workers? they lock the workers in overnight, make sure all of them are part time workers (no full-time) just so Walmart doesn't have to pay them health insurance, and unbelievably low wages. and many of their products are definitely from sweat shops, not fairly traded with international communities, etc. what do we do? buy their organic stuff or not?

    i wonder the same thing about target. are they a good business that takes care of their workers and pays well for oversea products by local communities?

    now that green is HOT, there are a lot of businesses jumping in the green bandwagon just for the profit - doesn't mean they're actually green. sigh. scary.


  4. while it's nice to have the larger corporations join us in the fight for a greener planet, we have to think about their ulterior motives. They're simply answering to the law of supply and demand. More and more people are going green,or want to appear green, so they're just giving us what we want. With that incentive in mind, do you think that they are really providing quality "green" product? I personally think that if they are making money-saving shortcuts in the quality of their clothes, how they treat their workers, etc etc, they will not hesitate to take short cuts with their greener products.
    Also, I've always been a big fan of mom and pop businesses... they just put more heart into their business and a majority of them actually seem to care about what goes into and comes out of their stores.

  5. aukaukist,

    a good example of a mom n pop store turning into a chain store is My Organic Market - they sell local organic fruits/vegetables (most of the time) and are pretty good with recycling- they provide light bulb recycling (both regular and CFL's) and recycling bins for magnets, etc. i can't say the same about other places, especially Whole Foods and Wild Oats. i was royally pissed a while back when I tried to recycle a plastic bottle I bought from their store - and found out they don't even have recycle bins. how could they?! what hypocrites. but do i stop supporting My Organic Market because it turned into a chain store?

    i think a good measure of a store- regardless if it's a large corporation, chain store, or a mom n pop store, is their action. what do you see? are they walking their talk?

    we can say target's not walking their talk by selling items that are very damaging for the environment.... it's hard to be totally green, but we can measure the effort through action.... and support those that walk their talk....regardless of store size?

    what do you think?


  6. and cass,

    forgive yourself. just read her books, they're wonderful!!!!

    :) hugs

  7. Going green with Kitchenware is soothing to the eyes, refreshing, and so nature-like.. I really enjoy eating my food in that kind of setting, specially when it matches with fresh breeze, and a nice view, aaahhh.. that's life...

    Banana leaves are very useful in the rural philippine kitchen. they can be used to wrap food like meat, fish and rice before steaming, grilling, boiling, frying or even baking, and gives food a very unique refreshing flavor. aside from that, they may also serve as plates! in some festivities, banana leaves cover tables and food are served directly on clean fresh leaves. no need for plates and cutlery. you eat with your hands. just remember to wash your hands thoroughly before and after! lol!