When providing sustainable options for your students, don't leave the bookstore out. The environment is currently in fashion with students, so being organic, recycled, or sustainable could give an item the edge it needs to be taken back to the dorm. A quick tour of the National Association of College Stores' CAMEX show floor in March revealed these goodies. Others are surely only an internet search away.
Enviro-Tote bags also come in beige, black, and 11 other colors, but the important detail is that they are made from organic cotton, recycled plastic bottles, and a combination of recycled cotton and recycled plastic. Made in the United States, the bags range in size from a 10-inch wide by 12-inch high mini tote to an 18-inch wide by 17.5-inch high large grocery bag. Prices depend on quantity and custom printing fees. Some bookstores use them to corral book order reservations at the beginning of the semester. Find out more at www.enviro-tote.com.
Nepalese Paper offers a variety of journals and stationery sets produced under Fair Trade compliant conditions in Nepal, providing employment to local women around Kathmandu. Instead of using wood pulp from trees for production, the paper is made from the Lokta Bush, a sustainable resource. Learn more at www.nepalesepaper.com.
The Leakey Collection is a line of jewelry made from drought resistant grass native to Kenya. The Maasai women cut, dye, and string the grass into necklaces and bracelets. The beads are created from a renewable resource, and the work has created economic and social stability for the Maasai. See a catalog at www.zulugrass.com or www.leakeycollection.com.
World of Good brings together a range of handcrafted items from Asia, Africa, and Latin America. Produced under Fair Trade agreements, the products range from bags and jewelry to notebooks and boxes. Materials range from sustainable resources to recycled candy wrappers. Read all about it at www.worldofgoodwholesale.com.
Everybody knows about Burt's Beeswax products. The company has a cleanser or balm for everything from head to toe. Made of mostly 100 percent natural ingredients, many of the products are also in recycled packaging. The company recently released a pomegranate formula in lip balm, shampoo, and conditioner, and an Aloe & Linden Flower After Sun Soother to rehydrate skin after fun in the sun. Stock up at www.burtsbees.com.
Kiss My Face has a new organic line that covers facial cleansers and lotions, toothpaste, moisturizers, and liquid and bar soap. The other product lines include all natural ingredients, with products ranging from makeup and sunscreen to aromatherapy body washes. Pucker up at www.kissmyface.com.