Green Shift™ Internal News
We are happy to report that we are still alive and well, with lots of strong supporters, and affecting change at multiple levels. As many of you know, a labour intensive website was never our thing… we are busy in the day to day, with the people in our sphere.
That said, we want to make room for more, and grow this network so that we can really fight back against backwards policies, and have the time and money to help further the cause as much as possible. One example we need time and money for is the fight against fake biodegradable products, and the government bodies who are more concerned about the money they are losing from people diverting waste (from their fee based landfill programs) than they are about making real progress.
Whoever wouldn't have seen that it was dangerous to create a revenue stream for the government when people send things to the landfill, and an expense to them when we go green. So what to do? Well, it seems their answer is to call the green bad and ban real biodegradables from compost with the logic (more or less) that we are all too stupid to find a way around the "confusion". Interesting (and not ironic) that they never challenge the most deadly petroleum based plastics – such as PVC… and … to think that we now have billboards boasting polystyrene as "recyclable".
For anyone who’s confused – here is the quick and simple: almost anything CAN be recycled – the issue is WILL it be. The answer – it is only going to be recycled if there is a market demand for it. So… will polystyrene be recycled – some of it yes… coffee cups and mass use take out containers… NO! They are the bottom of the barrel in terms of value… it is cheaper to buy virgin resin. Sure, polystyrene manufactures will fight against their market loss … maybe even by funding the recycling of their plagued materials for a period of time… but… bottom line… we produce far more polystyrene than we have recycling markets for, and… the material itself has implications that trace back to the drilling of the oil and beyond the concern of the chemical additives. Moreover – for anyone who gets what we have been trying to tell everyone – biodegradable does not just tell you about what becomes of a material but also, what goes into making that material.
Well… perhaps it is obvious why sometimes we say nothing at all… but, right now… we are thinking it might be time to start a petition. First things first – we will monitor the situation and would like to get feedback from all of you.
PS – Yes – GreenSupplyHouse Fall 2009 pricing is still in effect! New catalogue coming soon :)
We are finally starting to feel back to normal, although not quite there yet. We are working on several things, primarily focused on bringing a lot of previous work into the forefront. The Green Shift Supply House has been business as usual, providing tools to everyone wishing to green through products. Our assessments, audits and helping through consulting took a bit of a hit from the lawsuit, as did our quest to help identify the genuine green leaders - simply due to stress and lack of time. We hope to rebuild our strength and spirit and continue on our path to a greener world. We appreciate the support of everyone on board.
Lawsuit Settlement Agreement
It is difficult to describe the feelings surrounding this event. We are happy that we technically "won" the battle but the damage and the set back is.... more than unfortunate. That being said, the reality is that everyday we are in a battle - whether it be with politicians, manufacturers or just fighting the system - there are many strong forces that are more about maximizing profits and making themselves look good, than there are about ethics, reality, profit with principles, and helping the greater good.
That being said, we have been pleasantly surprised to find some really great environmental leaders – companies, institutions and individuals who are really walking the talk and are right there with us in this fight for a greener world.
For everyone who stood by us, wrote in letters of support and helped to bring some justice to this legal battle, we sincerely appreciate your support and thank you for keeping us on track, cleaning up in this polluted minefield, and helping trudge this path to a greener world.
A Midsummer Afternoon’s Dream at Eigensinn Farm.
Green Shift™ is happy to endorse a fundraiser in support of the Canadian Chef’s Congress at Eigensinn Farm.
If you’ve ever wanted to visit the world-famous Eigensinn Farm, this is a fantastic opportunity to taste the farm’s offerings and sample food from some of Toronto’s top chefs alongside Michael Stadtlander. We’re happy to say that Eigensinn Farm is part of the Green Shift™ program, as are many of the fabulous restaurants involved.
A few names include Jamie Kennedy of Jamie Kennedy Wine Bar, Brad Long of Veritas, Mark Cutrara of Cowbell, Adam Colquhoun of Oyster Boy, and Fifth Town Artisan Cheese Co. Full details available on the flyer.
For more information or to purchase tickets, visit:
June 23, 2008
Trademark Infringement/Lawsuit with the Liberal Party of Canada
Brief Synopsis: On June 18th we learned that the Liberal Party of Canada was infringing on our trademark. We tried to give a polite warning, but unfortunately when they did not immediately cease and desist, we were forced to file a lawsuit against them and issue an injunction. This matter was resolved in an out of court settlement. We have moved any details pertaining to this matter to the website that they had registered without our knowledge.
Green Shift™ Biodegradable Cups in hundreds of progressive cafes and restaurants across Canada.
Spring/ Summer 2007 Green Shift™ - Events galore: Toronto Pride, Toronto Jazz Festival, Luminato, Flower Child Festival, Bike Week, Al Gore in town, Green Living, and numerous other events, all active participants in our big joint green goal. In total Green Shift™ has worked with at least 100 event planners to see that biodegradable bags, biodegradable cups, plates, takeout containers, straws and more are all the norm, and to ensure that events as a whole can be enjoyed without the major costs to the environment that they traditionally are.
Hope you can make it out to support these great events:
Green Shift™, working with Center Plate, does behind the scenes greening of the Green Living Show, and the Direct Energy Centre.
Almost all items, that were traditionally disposable challenges with serious environment implications, have experienced a Green Shift™ at at Toronto's Direct Energy Centre. Not just for the Green Living Show but for all events moving forward, Green Shift™ has ensured that everything from biodegradable plates, cups, straws, containers, stir stix and more are in use and being properly disposed of. While we did run into some unexpected challenges with incorrect labelling of recycling bins and unfortunately no compost bins at all when the first show was beginnning, but fortunately that was rectified quickly and now the entire Direct Energy Center has compost bins, well labelled, throughout. And not just biodegradables but as per Green Shift™s mandate, all items have been replaced with the most environmental options on the market, and any areas that are not there yet are on the way. Green Shift™ would like to thank Center Plate, the Catering Company inside of the Direct Energy Center in particular for showing strong commitment to this initiative right from the beginning, and for working with us to make this all a reality.
Green Shift™ disputes an environmental claim from a company it has touted as a leader for years.
Polystyrene – people are seeing the alternatives and a ban is looming
Bogus O Waste Claim by Toronto Convention Center – 'Toronto convention a historic first: 3000 delegates, zero waste'
While we really try to focus on the good and leave the bad to bury themselves, we do get upset by false claims as it makes it much harder to ever achieve real success. In this case, it just seems we cannot help but say that this article holds very little truth. In reality, this event was barely any better than the standard from the last 10 years, and worse yet, there have been so many better that deserve the praise instead. . Ironically, our city mayor, David Miller, is quoted in this article congratulating the Center on their success. We can’t help but wonder – does he realize that those poly lined paper cups that they claimed to be recyclable at the Convention Centre are the very same issue that the government today suggested should be taxed for the non recyclability – what gives I wonder?? David did you even make it to the event? If you want more details, please call us.
Green Shift™ introduces a New biodegradable material that cuts landfill load
Who hasn't dreamed about going on tour with one's favourite rock'n'roll band? The interviews, the fans, the parties, oh to savour the gritty taste of life on the musical road! Never done it? Well, neither have we, but several of our products have, and are in fact out there right now!
The 'Hip are back on the road for a winter tour and this time we've helped them to Green Shift™ aspects of their bus tour, as well their backstage parties.
July 5, 2006
Biodegradable cups…no longer on the fringes.
The 2006 Fringe Festival was a great success from so many perspectives - not the least of which being that approximately 50,000 "disposable" cups were diverted from landfill through their responsible use of our biodegradable equivalent. McAuslan Beer really took the lead on this one and they deserve to be recognized here. Great theatre, McAuslan beer, and Green Shift™ biodegradables -a great team indeed!
June 23, 2006
Tragically Hip - A Part of the Green Shift™!
Two days of fantastic weather, a most fabulous venue at Old Fort York, and one of Canada's favorite bands with an absolutely outstanding performance - couldn't ask for anything more really but a proud announcement thanking Green Shift™ and the greenshifting they helped make a reality was sure a great addition! For this concert, all beer was served in biodegradable cups, all energy was derived from renewable resources, and there were booths on site promoting important environmental issues.
Green Shift™ founder Jennifer Wright was particularly excited to have received a personal call from lead singer, Gord Downie, as they are one of her favorite bands, and Jennifer spent many years analyzing CD packaging, and appreciating the Hip for being extremely progressive in words and action.
Green Shift™ was also happy for the opportunity to work with Toronto's Amsterdam brewery, who was very supportive and fundamental in bringing it all together.
For this event, 40 000 standard polystyrene cups were diverted from landfill and replaced with cups that are made from 100% renewable resources, 100 % petroleum free, and 100% biodegradable. There is a lot more to be done but this was a great example of some great shifting in the right direction.
For anyone and everyone ready go green, please contact us. Or... to directly sign up for energy from renewable resources, please contact BullFrog at bullfrogpower.com. To learn more about the great WaterKeepers please visit waterkeepers.ca.
June 19, 2006
GreenShifting on Vancouver Island with Phillips Brewery and the Victoria Folk Festival.
GreenShift was happy when Phillips called to greenshift their cups. As the first importer of the biodegradable cups in Canada, and holding values that Phillips aligns with, we were excited to help and also to find an extended affiliate in the Victoria Folk Festival, which kicks off June 30th. They will be one of the first recipients of Phillips biodegradable cups and in addition to supporting a great local microbrewery, the Victoria Folk Festival is showing multiple areas of support for GreenShift and as a result, will be keeping things clean and eco with full composting and recycling facilities and high end environmental products including Canadian-made recycled garbage bags, paper amenities and more. GreenShift is thrilled to be involved with such a great festival, and we look forward to further greening in the years to come.
June 10, 2006
CBC Newsworld highlights GreenShift on the French Channel.
July 27, 2005
GreenShift partners with Institute for the Blind to launch world's first biodegradable coffee cup.
A Toronto-based environmental consultant and supplier of green products has teamed up with a Memphis-based Center for the Blind, to produce the first truly biodegradable hot drinking cup.
Several years ago, Jennifer Wright, president of Toronto’s Green Shift™ approached Clovernook Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired to develop a biodegradable paper cup which could breakdown in landfill yet remain cool to the touch. In striving to source the most environmentally friendly cup possible, the alliance had a few obstacles to overcome.
“Coatings found on most cups are made from petroleum-based products, which don’t breakdown and contain toxic chemicals,” said Wright. “Without a coating, paper cups become soft and unusable after 20 minutes. We had to come up with a coating that would resist heat transferring to the hand, while breaking down safely in the environment. The results have been gratifying and my customers seem extremely happy.”
Coming in 9, 12, and 16-ounce sizes, the cups have already been sold to cafés and restaurants across the GTA and Canada.
Green Shift™ is the exclusive Canadian broker. Samples of the biodegradable hot drinking cup are available to the media.
June 8, 2005
First in Canada ’bio-plastic’ cups: A Green Shift™ for Steam Whistle Brewing
TORONTO - Canadian beer drinkers will soon be drinking their suds out of a cup that is 100% biodegradable, thanks to an initiative from Toronto’s Steam Whistle Brewing and cup supplier, Green Shift™. The new cups are a far cry from the standard in the disposable cup market, which are made from petroleum-based plastics, most commonly polystyrene. According to Jennifer Wright of Green Shift™, an environmental consulting firm and supplier of environmental alternatives, polystyrene is a serious environmental hazard because it does not break down, is very difficult to recycle and is made with benzene (a known carcinogen).
"This bio-plastic contains no petroleum, is made from 100 per cent renewable resources and takes about 48 days to break down in commercial compost," Wright said. "But even if many cups do end up in landfill, they will still break down and not be harming our environment."
The Good Beer Folks at Steam Whistle will be the first in Canada to embrace the sustainable cups on a large scale, an initiative Wright applauds for its support of small business and greater environmental preservation. The cups will be launched this summer onto patios, at outdoor events, and wherever disposable cups are required.
Steam Whistle has a history of ’green thinking’: the Brewery opted out of conventional heating/cooling systems, using instead Enwave’s direct steam and deep water-cooling systems in manufacturing and for the brewery’s climate control; the highly fuel-efficient smart car has been added to their service fleet; and the brewery’s heavy green glass bottle enjoys at least twice the number of re-uses as the industry standard brown bottle. Cam Heaps, President of Steam Whistle, plans to continue to ’Green Shift™’ and says, "This bio-degradable beer cup will have a great environmental benefit as breweries use thousands of cups each year for outdoor events."
Ah, the elation of a late summer wedding. With the tremulous lilt of cicadas in the air, the vivacious blossom of flowering peonies, and the smouldering yet fragile love of two humans manifested in an ancient ceremony of togetherness, what could possibly be better?
Often, the most evident and unfortunate detritus of this otherwise magical day is the astounding amount of generated waste, especially in an outdoor affair. Destined for landfill (the waste that is, not the marriage), "til death do us part" takes on new meaning when much of it will linger for hundreds, if not thousands of years. However, this doesn't have to be the case. Green Shift™, through our Green Supply House, puts together custom packages to make sure that weddings can be harmonious on all levels (although we can't take responsibility for your uncle who may have had one too many…).
April 14, 2005
Local Environmental Company brings Green Solution to Consumer Beverage Market
Torontonians will increasingly find their beverage of choice poured into biodegradable cups, as a growing network of companies are supplying cups and other products made from sugarcane, corn or natural paper fibres with special certified, biodegradable coatings.
Many companies in Toronto, including Merchants of Green Coffee, Dark City and the new Cherry Bomb Café© on Roncesvalles Avenue have already been serving steaming hot coffee from the new cups. Between classes, students and faculty at Upper Canada College and patrons at Fressen and Ra Ra Raw - vegan restaurants on Queen Street and in Kensington Market, are quaffing down drinks out of clear cold cups that will biodegrade within 50 days in commercial compost, a little longer if in landfill.
It’s all part of a 'green shift' engineered by Green Shift™ - a Toronto-based environmental company founded by consultant Jennifer Wright. The cups are just one of a series of products being touted to shift society away from polystyrene and other problematic petroleum derived plastics that Wright calls a "toxic nightmare that should have been banned long ago."
"There are many reasons, including the fact that there is no record in history of the traditional cups ever breaking down in landfill and polystyrene being made with benzene, a known carcinogen," said Wright.
"Not to mention the dependency these traditional products have on the petroleum industry and non-renewable resources."
While Wright says that there is still some green shifting needed in areas involving agricultural feeds, the new cups are a revolutionary product representing a new era in plastics altogether. To top it off, those now supplying the new cups report that some are beating the prices of their toxic cousins.
Biodegradable hot and cold cups are available to media and distributors from Green Shift™.
Phone: (416) 925-9665
Green Shift™ was founded in 2000 as a consulting agency offering advice and referrals. Green Shift™ is a 'Channel Your Profit' Company that works at various levels to help make it easy and cost effective for all business to be green. Located in Toronto, Green Shift™ operates throughout North America.
Toronto Restaurants, Caterers and Cafes:
Food service waste in Toronto makes up a significant portion of our waste stream. Not only does it occupy an enormous space, but more importantly the materials used in so much of the packaging is toxic.
Many food service agencies in the GTA are working with Green Shift™ to lessen Toronto's contribution to landfill. By to choosing to use our biodegradable plates, cups, and cutlery, by stocking our 100% recycled paper products, they are significantly reducing their own ecological footprint. Please help us to support these green leaders so that the Green Shift™ can spread.
"It's Easy Being Green"
Green Shift™ing the Gladstone Hotel Through Products & Services.
Green Shift™ Partnered with Holiday Inn
Green Shift™ Partnered Holiday Inn Wins "Green" Award Among 2000 International Hotels.
Contact Us: 416-925-9665 / info@GreenShift.ca
Green Shift™ on TV
Green Shift™ on MTV (Part 1)
Green Shift™ on MTV (Part 2)
Green Shift™ on MTV (Part 3)
Green Shift™ on the Radio
Unfortunately while we have had several segments on CBC regarding Green Shift and environmental preservation, we unfortunately did not ask for a copy of the segments in time. We will try to be more diligent about obtaining copies and posting our work in the future.
Green Shift™ in Print
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