VERONA, NJ – Green Point Juicery was named Verona’s first Sustainable Business. At the Verona Green Fair on May 22, Green Point Juicery was officially recognized as a Green Business by the Sustainable Verona team.
“It was an honor for us to be recognized by Sustainable Verona as the first green business in town. At Green Point Juicery we believe that being environmentally friendly is just as important as having high quality products and good customer service,” said owner Eugene "Green" Onishkevich. “As part of our sustainability program we recycle, use biodegradable cups and containers made from corn plastic and use only organic ingredients to reduce our footprint. We also collaborate with Morgan's Farm in Cedar Grove to whom we donate all pulp from juicing for compost.”
The Verona Green Business Program is the newest program from Sustainable Verona. The program recognizes and promotes local businesses that demonstrate a commitment to sustainability by implementing responsible environmental practices at their business. Sustainable Verona created 10 criteria that a business can implement to become a Green Business. In order to qualify a business must implement at least five of the criteria which are:
1. Turn off lights, computers and other office equipment on nights and weekends
2. Use a programmable thermostat or control during unoccupied times
3. Replace light bulbs with low energy LEDs
4. Use recycled paper products
5. Use environmentally friendly cleaning supplies
6. Recycle (business products as well as consumer waste)
7. Promote walking, biking or carpooling to work
8. Offer a wellness program to employees
9. Other Green initiatives specific to your business and industry
10. Purchase local material/foods regularly (Local = 5 mile radius)
“When we approached Green Point about the program, Eugene loved the idea and submitted his application right away,” said Steve Neale, chair of Sustainable Verona. “They submitted their application with eight out of 10 criteria completed. They take great care in regards to how things get disposed of at the store. Most of their waste is food waste and they make sure to compost everything they can.”
Neale said the Sustainable Verona team tries to find innovative ways to help support local businesses because a thriving business community is the backbone of a sustainable community. Several incentives are offered to businesses that go “green” including their logo and business profile featured on the Township Green Business and Facebook pages, a free table at the annual Green Fair and a discount on the Vidoovy Video and Subscription. In addition, Green Businesses have access to education and networking support through Sustainable Verona.
“We want to encourage people to live and shop local. This program fits right in with our newly launched Video Community Map, which is why we are able to offer a huge discount for any Green Business looking to get involved with the Vidoovy Platform,” Neale noted.
Other goals of Green Business Recognition program:
- To encourage and support sustainable operating practices of Verona businesses via education and incentives.
- To increase community awareness of and investment in local business.
- To improve business satisfaction with the municipality by providing opportunities for networking and comradery.
- To accomplish these goals in accordance with Sustainable Jersey guidelines so that this Action yields points toward Verona’s progress in the program.
“The goal is to make the program approachable for any business in town, not just the ones you would typically think of as being green,” Neale said. “We want to show that there are simple steps any business can take to be more environmentally friendly while saving money as well.”
All photos by Cheryl Brown