Green Employees Earn a little Extra Green

Pajaro, CA—SunRidge Farms, maker of natural and organic dried fruit, nuts, seeds, candies, and trail and snack mixes, has a new green initiative. The company pays employees five dollars a day to bike to and from work. For some workers, this can add up to an additional $100 a month in their pockets!

The company is no stranger to eco-friendly projects. Here are some others:
• Its warehouse is equipped with a 99kW solar panel system that provides 70% of the power for its manufacturing plant and reduces CO2 emissions by 100 tons per year.
• Seventeen delivery trucks run on renewable biodiesel fuel.
• Its site uses low-flow water-saving devices.
• SunRidge has a recycling program for various materials.

Retailers can start similar green initiatives for their stores. Is five dollars a day too much for each employee in your store? Try incentives such as an employee bonus discount shopping hour for your eco-friendly commuters or offer a monthly gift basket for employees who carpool or utilize public transportation as often as they can. Offer a promotion to the employee who can think of how to implement the best green strategy for your store, whether it is better lighting, less packaging or installing a solar panel.

Published in WholeFoods Magazine, June 2010