Step 1

Educate your consumers about the costs of disposable products that aren’t reparable, recyclable, or compostable and end up in the landfill.

Step 2

Create thoughtful ways for customers to come to a final purchase decision that limits unnecessary returns.

Step 3

Consider a repair program that minimizes repurchasing.

Step 4

If samples are an important driver of your business, design a sampling process that allows for temporary rental/returns, or design samples and packaging to be recyclable rather than disposable (easy to separate components for proper recycling).

Step 5

Source from manufacturers, makers, and artisans that prioritize low-waste practices and sustainable materials.

Step 6

Redistribute imperfect product for another use (internal or external to your company).

Step 7

Redistribute/resell excess inventory.

Step 8

Package your goods in recyclable, compostable, or reusable materials.

Step 9

Reuse or recycle the packaging elements you receive from your suppliers (i.e. plastic bags, boxes, ties).

Step 10

Set up a three-bin system (compost, recycling, landfill). Establish a point person to ensure items get sorted properly.

Step 11

Post guidelines from your local waste management company to eliminate contamination (yes, a sheet of paper is okay to prevent contaminated recycling).