Did you know that deforestation is the single greatest cause of global warming? And according to the Natural Resources Defense Council, production of bath tissue (aka – toilet paper) is responsible for 15% of that loss?
My favorite new green product is Marcal’s line of 100% recycled paper products – Small Steps. Launched earlier this year, the Small Steps line uses 100% recycled fiber, contains no dyes or fragrances, and is not whitened with chlorine bleaching (a common, but environmentally harmful manufacturing process).
There are other brands marketing paper products made from recycled material, Seventh Generation and Whole Foods 365 come to mind, but Marcal’s Small Steps is the first brand to offer a “premium” performance at a popular price.
American consumers have been on a premium push lately, with ever-softer bath tissue products driving category sales volume – up 40% in 2008. This softness comes at a high environmental price – brands like Charmin Ultra, Quilted Northern Ultra and Cottonelle Ultra use pulp from trees (and no recycled fibers) to get that plush, cloudlike feel. And Americans lag behind other countries with recycled paper purchases representing less than 2% of bath tissue sold compared to 20% in South America and Europe.
But now seems like a good time for consumers to take some small steps to save the environment and save some money at the same time. Greenpeace calculates that if every American household purchased just one roll of 100% recycled bath tissue instead of their usual brand, 400,000 trees would be saved. Seems like it’s pretty easy to be green!