Biz Bulletins

Green products, services and other announcements from green companies.


4/2/2014

Refresh from Cheribundi

To call the 2012 tart cherry harvest a setback for Cheribundi would be an understatement.

It was a disaster.

Two of the largest tart cherry producing states, Michigan and New York, had terrible yields, the result of an early spring heat wave that encouraged blooms 5 1/2 weeks early — and put the tender blossoms, as well as the juice company’s own prospects, at the mercy of the snow and ice that followed.

“It tricked the trees into blooming early,” said Cheribundi CEO Brian Ross. “Then the regular spring weather kicked in and destroyed the entire crop.”

For a brand that should have been putting the pedal to the metal — after all, it had just raised $4.5 million, the resulting increase in the price of its main ingredient put the brakes on all retail programs for the year. They cancelled all promotions with UNFI, took a small price increase, and let some employees go.

“We did a lot of soul-searching,” said Ross, who joined the company a little more than two years ago. Facing a huge supply crisis, the company battened down the hatches and tried to work on a re-brand, one that Ross was set to debut at this week’s Fancy Foods West show in San Francisco.

“We wanted to go more broad market…and I’m more excited about the products now than I ever have been,” he said. “I feel like we’ve created this platform for becoming the Ocean Spray of cherries.”

The key to the re-branding, which was engineered by the Boulder, Colo. agency TDA, is a new line of 16.9 oz. products called “Refresh.” The eight SKUs — four tea blends with 5 percent juice and five 25 percent juice blends — will join the company’s more functional 8 oz. line, which attempts to exploit the tart cherry’s “superfruit” properties. Those properties include a strong anti-inflammatory component that has put the tart cherry in the training room at dozens of college and pro athletic programs, as well as a healthy dose of melatonin for sleep aid.

The new line is set to debut at Fresh Market in March, while the functional line continues to be available through several Whole Foods regions.

The Refresh line, which features tart cherry crossed with lemonade, pomegranate, blueberry, raspberry and cranberry juices, has about 20 cherries per bottle — an effective dose for the functional properties, notes Ross, although one that drastically expands use occasions. The teas have about five cherries per bottle, while the 8 oz. functional line ranges from 40 to 50 cherries per bottle and carry additional functional tags like “restore” (with electrolytes), “rebuild” (with protein) and “relax” (with l-theanine), along with the original and light formulations.

The company’s ginger and cacao varieties have been dropped.

Ross said the slowdown forced by the crop losses — he was forced to go to Poland to buy tart cherries — while hurtful last year, allowed him the chance to retool the brand.

“The perspective we came at it, when you look at our old packaging, it’s interesting, it’s nice looking, but it’s not very appetizing,” Ross said.  “When you look at it now, it says this is a cherry product, it looks very tasty. And taste sells, and the benefits are a bonus for a lot of people.”

This press release is presented without editing for your information. MOTHER EARTH NEWS does not recommend, approve or endorse the products and/or services offered. You should use your own judgment and evaluate products and services carefully before deciding to purchase.



4/2/2014
Cheribundi logo
Cheribundi, Inc., is excited to announce that two of their top-selling Tart Cherry Refresh Juice Blends are now available to purchase in all 4600 Rite Aid Stores. These flavors include Cherry Lemonade Refresh and Cherry Cranberry Refresh, and will be featured in Rite Aid's cold boxes next to other chilled refreshments.

CEO Brian Ross says, "We are excited to partner with one of the top drug store chains in America, gaining the opportunity to introduce Cheribundi to their many health-conscious customers." 

Cheribundi tart cherry juice products are available nationwide in grocery, natural and specialty retailers, including Kroger, Whole Foods Markets, Sprouts, Fresh Markets, and more. Please visit Cheribundi for more information. While the Refresh Juice Blends are popular Cheribundi choices, Cheribundi also offers many other tart cherry juice products. Cheribundi products include five Refresh Juice Blends, four Refresh Tea Blends, two organic frozen puree smoothie packs, and five functional tart cherry juices. Cheribundi is a fresh-pressed tart cherry juice made from a proprietary juicing process developed by scientists at Cornell University to yield peak antioxidant levels.  

Regular consumption of tart cherry juice is reported to reduce post-exercise muscle and joint pain. Tart cherries’ anti-inflammatory benefits may reduce pain from gout and arthritis, and they have an extensive list of heart health benefits. They also contain significant levels of melatonin that is believed to promote deeper, more restful sleep.

Over 90 NCAA and professional sports teams, plus hundreds of professional and amateur runners, cyclists and triathletes are currently purchasing Cheribundi for muscle recovery, better sleep and less pain.

This press release is presented without editing for your information. MOTHER EARTH NEWS does not recommend, approve or endorse the products and/or services offered. You should use your own judgment and evaluate products and services carefully before deciding to purchase.



4/1/2014

Nuts.com, family owned since 1929

At Nuts.com, we understand the responsibility we have in protecting our environment for future generations. Our beloved family-owned business has been around for three generations already, and we would love to continue making hearts and tummies smile for three more, at least! Over 80 years since our founding, Nuts.com currently offers more than 3,000 products of nuts, dried fruit, snacks, candy, and cooking and baking supplies.

We continue to make strides in the direction of running our business with more eco-friendly practices. To package our products, we use 100% post-consumer recycled cardboard boxes to save trees and reduce the impact on landfills. We recycle all of our boxes and our customers can too. We only use starch biodegradable packing peanuts which will break down naturally once they're thrown away. For even easier disposal, the packing peanuts can also be dissolved under running water in your sink.

We also take pride in how we keep our warehouse lit. We replaced all HID (metal halide) lights with energy efficient fluorescent light fixtures, which consume nearly 60% less energy. When we aren't working in one area of our warehouse, our lights aren't either; we use motion sensors so that the lights go out when there's no one around.

We're proud to provide a healthy and environmentally-conscious snacking alternative with our offering of over 250 certified organic foods. From cooking staples like organic quinoa to nutritious snacks like organic almonds, we believe in making nourishing food options accessible to our customers. We also offer nutrient-dense organic superfoods like organic chia seeds, which can be hard to find in local grocery stores.

Our facility is organically certified by the California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF), which holds our business to the highest standard available for organic foods. We maintain our certification through regular inspections and monitoring by both the CCOF and the USDA. Our certification is your assurance that our organic foods are grown and handled according to the strictest procedures available.

This press release is presented without editing for your information. MOTHER EARTH NEWS does not recommend, approve or endorse the products and/or services offered. You should use your own judgment and evaluate products and services carefully before deciding to purchase.



3/31/2014

Patagonia logo

Patagonia, Inc., the outdoor apparel company, today launched its Simple Fly Fishing campaign — a program designed to demystify fly fishing and make it more accessible. The centerpiece is Patagonia’s Simple Fly Fishing kit, which contains a tenkara-style fly fishing rod, box of flies, line and leader, quick set up guide and a new book by Yvon Chouinard, Craig Mathews and Mauro Mazzo entitled Simple Fly Fishing: Techniques for Tenkara and Rod & Reel.

The kit is available in Patagonia retail stores across the United States, Canada, Japan and online starting today, and remaining stores on May 1. In addition, anyone visiting Patagonia stores can also get instant advice about the best places to go fishing in their local areas, as well as information about tenkara fly fishing clinics — open to the public — to be held in select retail locations in the coming days. This is the first time the company has sold gear for fly fishing, except for apparel.

“This is for the young person who has wanted to learn, but is intimidated by the complexity, elitism and expense of fly fishing,” notes Yvon Chouinard, Patagonia's founder and owner. “This is for the woman and her daughter who are put off by the image of the testosterone-fueled, good-old-boy bass and trout fisherman who turned the ‘contemplative pastime’ into a competitive combat sport. And for the long-time angler who has everything and wants to replace all that stuff with skill, knowledge and simplicity.”

The wisdom behind the campaign includes a belief that the way towards mastery of any endeavor is to work towards simplicity, and to replace complex technology with knowledge. Patagonia's Simple Fly Fishing kit aims to achieve just that. The tenkara fly rod contained in the kit — which has no reel — comes from a centuries-old Japanese fly fishing technique, which has been all but lost in modern-day fly fishing.

The rod is light, sensitive and elegant. Chouinard has found this incredibly simple technique to be highly effective at catching even the most difficult, highly selective fish. Patagonia developed the kit to promote the simplicity of this technique and bring many new people to the sport of fly fishing.

The book aims to teaches readers, from beginner anglers to master fishermen, how to discover where the fish are, at what depth and what they are feeding on. It then describes the techniques needed to present a fly at that depth, make it look lifelike and hook the fish. With chapters on wet flies, nymphs and dry flies, the authors employ both the tenkara rod as well as regular fly fishing gear to cover all the bases. With paintings by renowned fish artist James Prosek, and inspiring photographs and stories throughout, Simple Fly Fishing reveals the secrets and the soul of this captivating sport.

One percent of the sales from the book go to the preservation and restoration of the natural environment. In addition, the authors are donating their entire proceeds from the sales of the first edition to the Native Fish Society, the Atlantic Salmon Federation, and 1% for The Planet. Finally, Temple Fork Outfitters, which produces the fly fishing rods for Patagonia, is donating $10 for each rod sold to organizations dedicated to river and creek restoration.Simple Fly Fishing Kit

Simple Fly Fishing kit details:

Tenkara fly rod, available in 8'6", 10'6" or 11'6" lengths
Simple Fly Fishing (book) by Yvon Chouinard, Craig Mathews & Mauro Mazzo
• Simple Fly Fishing quick set up guide
• Box of Yvon-recommended flies (12 count)
• Line & leader

Kit components are also for sale individually.

This press release is presented without editing for your information. MOTHER EARTH NEWS does not recommend, approve or endorse the products and/or services offered. You should use your own judgment and evaluate products and services carefully before deciding to purchase.



3/21/2014

Absolute Bird Control Company

Swallows are sleek, slender birds typically found in North America. They are very territorial, returning to the same nesting site in the spring and summer. Once confined to cliffs, swallows have become a growing nuisance in suburban areas. Instead of attaching their nests to cliffs, many prefer man-made structures like the wood beams and stucco of modern houses. They often build their characteristic mud nests in the outer walls and eaves of homes. Left on your home long enough, swallow nests will leave an unsightly stain.

A colony of birds will also leave a trail of droppings down the sides of your home and the ground below. Property owners spend time and money cleaning up the mess and concern over the slip-and-fall hazards from swallow droppings. The bacteria, fungal agents and parasites found in swallow droppings and nests can carry hosts with serious diseases, including histoplasmosis, encephalitis, salmonella, meningitis, toxoplasmosis and more. How to Deter Swallows from Nesting

Worse yet, swallow mud nests are often infested with insects. The insects tend to move into your home to find new hosts. Even when swallows leave, their vacant nests simply attract new birds.

Homeowners should be rightly concerned about swallows nesting on their homes, but there are limitations to what one can do. You see, swallows and their nests are fully protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918, which makes it illegal to intentionally kill, injure or take any migratory bird. It is also illegal to intentionally damage or destroy the nest, eggs, or young of a swallow while it is being built or in use. The Act allows fines or prison sentences for every bird, egg or nest destroyed.

Fortunately, there are some swallow deterrents one can use that are both effective and humane.

An effective type of bird netting one can rely on to safely exclude swallows is plastic bird net. This low-profile netting is an ideal way to prevent birds from getting under eaves, barns, balconies, garages, sheds and other areas around your home. The netting is a lightweight plastic mesh made of durable, U.V. protected polypropylene. It comes in three different mesh sizes: 3/4”, 1/2”, and 1/4” and a variety of cuts to match the area being treated.

Plastic bird netting is easy to work with and can be readily secured with twine, zip ties, or hog rings. For vegetable gardens, wrap individual plants or suspend netting around the entire garden area for protection. Ultra netting is meant for temporary use and hangs easily using the clips provided by the manufacturer. You can also just use a staple gun to secure the netting around any perimeter.

Another effective tool is a bird slope product. This is a humane way to block small and large birds from landing or nesting on open ledges. These slippery PVC panels are ideal for use on any ledge that meets at a 90 degree angle. They can also be used on eaves. As an anti-perching, anti-roosting deterrent, bird slopes have proven to be effective against all types of birds, including swallows. Each bird slope section is 2 feet long, and you get 4 feet per box. The specially fabricated panels are made of U.V. protected PVC to make them sun and weather resistant.

Installation is a snap, since there are a variety of bird slope accessories available to accommodate different areas. For example, there's a "snap on" extender, so you can easily adapt it to wider ledges. And special “end caps” are also available to keep swallows from getting behind the slope. The product comes in two colors (stone and grey) to match your home's décor.

There are also nearly invisible physical deterrents to keep swallow from nesting on your home. Use an anti-nesting product that is easy to install and will deter swallows by creating a barrier of plastic twine that is uncomfortable for the birds to fly through. By placing it under your eaves, it makes your house an undesirable location for swallows to build their nest.

For additional advice on protecting your home from swallows, contact an expert the folks at Absolute Bird Control.

This press release is presented without editing for your information. MOTHER EARTH NEWS does not recommend, approve or endorse the products and/or services offered. You should use your own judgment and evaluate products and services carefully before deciding to purchase.



3/20/2014

Bobcat Tier 4

Bobcat Company has released its first Tier 4 600 frame-size loaders — the S630 and S650 skid-steer loaders and the T630 and T650 compact track loaders. The 600-platform loaders were the first Bobcat® M-Series loader models introduced, setting the pace for greater productivity due to their enhancements in operator comfort, hydraulic power and easier serviceability. Today, these four 74-horsepower loaders provide operators with all of the same performance benefits of the previous interim Tier 4 models and meet emissions standards without a diesel particulate filter (DPF).

Tier 4 compliance with non-DPF solution

The Tier 4 Bobcat non-DPF solution was achieved by designing an ultra-low particulate combustion (ULPC) engine. The ULPC is accomplished through a specially designed engine combustion chamber that significantly reduces the amounts of particulate matter created during combustion. Therefore, Tier 4 emissions compliance can be achieved without using a DPF.

In addition to eliminating the need for a DPF, the new engines used in 600 frame-size loaders will have increased torque. This increase in torque is produced over a wide range of engine rpm, allowing operators of all skill levels to better utilize the machines’ maximum performance.

Simplified maintenance reduces costs

Known for fast and easy serviceability, Bobcat provides owners and operators even more simplified maintenance with the new 600-platform loaders. A 500-hour engine oil and filter change interval replaces the previous 250-hour interval to help reduce overall routine maintenance costs. Another maintenance improvement for the machines includes an air filter equipped with a built-in pre-cleaner filter to help extend the life of the filter in high-debris applications. Owners and operators will also benefit from a cartridge-style block heater that is easy to install and use, to assist with engine starts in cold conditions.

Machine protection systems minimize engine wear and damage

For over a decade, Bobcat loaders have been equipped with standard machine shutdown protection that monitors engine and hydraulic functions. The Bobcat engine continues to improve these investment-saving features. Prior to the Bobcat engine, engine coolant and hydraulic oil temperatures were monitored. If these functions fell outside of their normal operating ranges, the system alerted the operator and shut down the machine to prevent catastrophic damage.

With the Bobcat engines, machine shutdown is still possible when needed. However, instead of shutdown being the only solution, the system monitors coolant and oil temperatures and manages the engine to prevent them from reaching a point where the machine must be shut down. This prevents engine damage, minimizes engine wear and keeps operators working.

Another new feature of the skid-steer and compact track loader line is cold weather protection. Anytime the engine temperature is too low, the loader will temporarily limit the maximum engine speed (rpm) to prevent premature component wear or failure. Engine idle speed is also raised slightly to help the engine reach its operating temperature faster. As soon as the engine warms up to a predetermined temperature, the protection mechanism will deactivate.

Well-balanced Bobcat M-Series power and performance

The 600-frame size loaders’ horsepower, weight and hydraulic flow combine to make them some of the most well-balanced in the Bobcat loader line. This loader size is ideal for landscaping and construction contractors who need more power than what mid-size frame loaders provide.

The S630 and T630 loaders feature a radius lift path, providing operators good reach and visibility at mid-range heights like loading flatbed trucks or backfilling. The S650 and T650 models feature a vertical lift path, providing operators the ability to lift heavier loads higher, making it easier to clear high-sided truck boxes and feed wagons, as well as place pallets.

All four Tier 4 600 frame-size loaders offer operators a two-speed option for faster travel when desired. The S630 and S650 skid-steer loaders have a maximum speed of 7.1 mph in low mode and 12.3 mph in high mode, while the T630 and T650 track loaders can travel at a top speed of 6.6 mph in low mode and 10.7 mph in high mode.

The Bobcat 600-frame size compact track loader models feature the first all-steel suspension designed to reduce vibration and noise. The rollers are suspended by high-strength steel leaf springs to minimize ground vibration. The forged steel rollers are permanently sealed and lubricated.

Cab-forward design provides industry-leading visibility to work areas

Like all M-Series loaders, the 600 frame-size loaders feature a unique cab-forward design that moves the operator closer to the attachment and provides unmatched visibility in all directions. The new loaders tout the largest cab door opening on the market, offering superior visibility to the cutting edge of the bucket or the corners of an attachment.

Windows on the sides and rear of the cab are larger in size to provide more visibility to the tires, tracks and back of the machine. The larger top window makes it easier and more comfortable for the operator to see an attachment with the lift arms raised, an advantage when loading trucks or performing other tasks.

Operator comfort is king

Comfortable operators are more productive, so to create a better working environment, the 600 frame-size loaders feature a large cab, redesigned interior and improved cab pressurization. The loaders have a best-in-class pressurized cab with a new one-piece seal that goes all the way around the door and fits into a special curved pocket. This minimizes the amount of dirt and dust that might enter the cab, creating more enjoyable working conditions and making it easier to clean the cab.

Operators also have the choice between standard foot pedal hydraulic controls, the Advanced Control System (ACS) or the Selectable Joystick Controls (SJC) on all machine models.

The best of both worlds: hydraulics and horsepower

The hydraulic systems on M-Series loaders have been engineered for higher standard flow and pressure, which provides increased attachment performance. Engine horsepower and hydraulic flow are matched to the loader’s rated operating capacity, size and weight, producing a loader that can outperform higher-horsepower compact loaders.

Easier maintenance improves productivity

Operators want to spend minimal time on routine maintenance to start the workday earlier, and the loaders are designed to work long hours in demanding conditions. Simple check points and superior design make it easier to perform maintenance correctly at the proper intervals. The auxiliary hydraulic quick couplers are mounted directly to the front plate of the lift arm to provide a solid mounting, and hoses are routed through the loader arms for better protection.

Available only on M-Series loaders, the optional deluxe instrumentation panel intelligently monitors key loader functions — including fuel consumption — and the keyless start helps prevent theft. The 5-inch, full-color LCD screen offers better readability and operator interaction. Easy-to-read virtual sweep gauges allow operators to quickly read and understand the machine’s performance.

This press release is presented without editing for your information. MOTHER EARTH NEWS does not recommend, approve or endorse the products and/or services offered. You should use your own judgment and evaluate products and services carefully before deciding to purchase.



3/17/2014

Liquid Hardware Sidewinder bottle

Liquid Hardware forges ahead with the invention of their new Sidewinder™ vacuum-insulated, magnetic water bottle. Now users can keep their lids intact, while also maintaining the temperature of their hot and cold beverages. And backers can get a piece of the action too, as the Liquid Hardware Kickstarter campaign goes live this week.

Liquid Hardware's Sidewinder™ bottle transcends functionality with its patented technology. In addition to the Quick Stick LidTM — a magnetic top that, once removed, secures safely to the bottle’s stainless collar — users also benefit from the Sidewinder’s™ vacuum-insulated and no sweat construction, keeping hot drinks hot for up to 8 hours and cold ones cold for 24. And as an added bonus, the removable lid becomes a survival compass. When floated upside down in water, the lid orients its magnet due north or south, guiding recreationalists on their way.

With the launch of the Kickstarter project, Liquid Hardware aims to provide customers with the technology they’ve been asking for. By obtaining the funding for tooling, production, and shipping, Liquid Hardware will put bottles into the hands of patiently awaiting customers and retailers. “Our classic Outrigger™ bottle is selling strong, but it was always my intention to expand the offering. I listened to both shops and consumers, realizing that the insulated Sidewinder™ bottle was the next natural step towards upping customer stoke.”

And the Sidewinder™ bottle looks cool too! Drinkers can now be the envy of their posse with custom laser-etched bottle graphics and finishes, while enjoying one-handed freedom and a temperature-perfect drink of their choice.

Stay HOT, COLD, and CONNECTED
Visit Kickstarter to become a backer.

This press release is presented without editing for your information. MOTHER EARTH NEWS does not recommend, approve or endorse the products and/or services offered. You should use your own judgment and evaluate products and services carefully before deciding to purchase.









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