Blue Star Refreshments, a catering service for offices in Silicon Valley of San Jose, California, is an atypical business venture for a number of reasons, highlighted below. For these tasks, Blue Star received the Better Business Bureau Santa Clara County Green Business CoolCalifornia.org award.
1. This business provides sustainable consulting to clients in addition to delivering (fresh, healthy) food.
2. This business has helped customers cut back on energy costs by retrofitting the conventional vending machine design. The Blue Star version of a vending machine includes LED lighting, a sensor that can inform the stocking company remotely that the machine needs to be filled (thereby greatly reducing labor and gas costs by eliminating routine check-ups), and use of the VendingMiser® technology. This technology powers down the vending machine when traffic is reduced, monitors the room’s temperature to consume the least amount of energy necessary, and automatically re-powers the cooling system at one to three hour intervals to ensure the product stays cold.
3. This business practices what it preaches by implementing the following “Climate Friendly Actions,” according to the CoolCalifornia.org case study:
- Using service vehicles that run on B99 biodiesel• Utilizing a pallet and packaging recycling program
• Retrofitting old equipment with energy
saving technologies free of charge to customers
Consider discussing energy saving options with a business next door, and encourage them to join the Sustainable Business Network. Recommend EnergyStar appliances or “green” techniques that have worked for you.
Place signs all throughout your store or restaurant informing customers of your sustainable practices. Or feature these qualities on your website for customers researching their bike trip online. They may choose your business because you are greener!!
Spreading the word is as easy as having a conversation: in person, on the phone, online… Because really, that’s how this information is best discussed.
We hope you’re boasting about your green practices, because they are definitely something to be proud of! Keep up the good work and keep on reaching for that blue ribbon standard.