Green ideas to optimise retail performance

Green is the word of the day. The growing concern with global warming and ecosystem preservation is forcing everyone into taking some serious steps towards a better world. Read on to know what retailers can do in this regard.

With the world intelligentsia, recently, flocking Copenhagen to discuss ways to protect and preserve the environment, many industries have started taking the matter seriously. Topping the list are retailers and FMCG companies that have rapidly learnt that being green and appearing green, makes great business sense. 

What’s prompting them to go green?
One of the main reasons that is prompting retailers and FMCG companies to go green is the customer’s willingness to shell out extra money for green brands. The consumers have become conscious about the environment and thus prefer buying eco-friendly products. And this is reason enough to consider green branding.

“Nature is the lifeline of the business at Dabur. We have not merely incorporated the concept of sustainability into the core of our business but have, in fact, expanded it to encompass our aspirations and responsibilities to the society and to the environment. It is this concept that inspires us to optimise our business performance to tackle the new and growing challenges of environment and technology,” says the spokesperson for Dabur. 

FMCG players can reduce carbon emission at two levels, at the manufacturing and at the supply chain level. Some companies are developing their own eco-standards and product labelling.

Support given by IT companies
Wipro, being one of the leading green IT brands, has taken various initiatives to help retailers reduce their carbon footprints and carbon levels. Wipro’s award winning platforms, the Global Command Center (GCC) and Global Service Management Center (GSMC) have been used for many years to help its customers manage their IT infrastructure, substantially reducing the costs of service delivery. “Over the past few years, we have invested a significant amount in research and development. This enables us to bring in the same structured services that are standardised in the IT infra world to business critical infrastructure for customers (like Kiosks for retail) and building infrastructure (like heating/cooling, lighting, and electrical systems) a truly end-to-end infrastructure solution. The key benefit to the customers is reduction of operating expenditure due to reduced field support costs, and energy costs,” says Kiran Desai, VP, Managed IT, Wipro Infotech.

Wipro also offers a power saving solution, which shuts down the desktops in retail shops, godown, back offices and places where desktops are not used by end user beyond their office hours. Wipro also suggests the retail layout to retailers to reduce load, which might also involve civil work.

Dabur has initiated several new green projects under which alternate sources of energy are proposed to be utilised as a substitute for boiler fuel. One such project is in which briquettes will be made out of herbal waste. A project to use wet herbal waste as fuel directly in the boiler is being initiated at Pantnagar, Uttranachal in collaboration with a Belgian company. A new husk based gasifier is being installed at the Nepal unit for reducing dependence on conventional fuels. 

Simple measures to go green 
Recycle paper, plastic, aluminum, ink cartridges
Reuse packing materials and cardboard boxes. 
Use double-sided printing when possible. 
Reduce paper transactions by going digital for bill payment, vendor ordering, invoices, online banking, e-mail and faxing directly from your computer. 
Switch to rechargeable batteries. Large office supply stores even have collection centers for recycling dead rechargeable batteries. 
Use eco-friendly cleaning products that are biodegradable and non-toxic. 
Purchase energy-efficient PCs, printers, and other equipment.

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