In celebration of Earth Day this month, I thought I would focus on how using real, natural and fresh greenery to decorate with is beneficial to our planet. While I usually like to make these blog posts generally informative, this particular topic forces me to shift focus a bit. I can't make claims for every company in existence, so with this blog post, I have to zero in and share what we do. After all, I can only speak to what I know and this is what I know. Okay, with that disclaimer out of the way...let's get on with it!
We have been doing this a long time and have partnered with people that share our passion for protecting our planet. On the "front-end" of creating Christmas and Winter decorations, the greenery is harvested sustainably, and pretty much entirely on USA soil. It really gives a whole new meaning to "made in the USA". Harvesting of our greenery takes place only after there has been a hard frost on the trees, which can happen early fall in the higher elevations. This hard frost is what "sets" the needles and allows the branches to last for a long time without shedding. If harvesting happens too soon, needle shed can occur which will make for messier decorations that you can't enjoy for as long.
Trained arborists trek into the forests on land where they have been granted permission to obtain cuttings. They carefully make cuttings, with strategic cuts to not only prevent harm to the growing trees, but to actually benefit them. Think of it like a getting a haircut....making strategic cuts helps your hair stay healthy and continue to grow...the same is true for these arborists and the cuttings they make on the trees. Making these cuts actually benefits the trees, allowing more sunlight in and it helps the trees grow even stronger.
These cuttings are backpacked and/or helicopter lifted from their remote locations to production facilities where the branches are measured, weighed, bundled or cased or made into a finished decoration. These production facilities are climate controlled to keep these cuttings fresh during this stage of the process.
The turn around time is pretty quick and the fresh greenery isn't at these production facilities very long. They are loaded into climate-controlled tractor-trailers and shipped to locations across the country. For all product that we bring into our facility, we time our shipments for optimum turn-around, cycling inbound and outbound relatively quickly. While product is in our facility, it is kept in climate-controlled coolers with alarms that will notify of any temperature variation.
The time-frame from initial harvesting to people using these products in their homes is relatively short. The fragrance is fresh and even the sap within the branches is still plentiful, making decorating fun but sometimes sticky. The great thing about this freshness is the healthy benefits for people being around these fresh decorations both indoors and outdoors. As humans, we are innately designed to be connected with nature. Yet in our high-tech, fast-paced world, we sometimes forget that fact and the detrimental effects of being disconnected from nature is regretfully plentiful.
Decorating with fresh and natural decorations is a positive step towards a better balance for our bodies. Being near nature is good for us, and when we can't get to the forest, with fresh decorations, we can bring the forest to us.
Finally, when the winter season has ended and we are looking to refresh our decorations for spring, the natural winter branches and decorations can be recycled, and composted. We did a whole blog post about that topic last month in case you missed it.
We also did a short video (Facebook Live) about this in celebration of Earth Day a few years ago. (Warning: This video was a brief impromptu one, complete with windy, hair-blowing air outside, poor lighting and color, and other things that make me cringe as technology has advanced since I did this several years ago.) However, the content is still great and that is why I want to share this with you. Yes please, for my sake, please only focus on the content. ;-)
To learn more about just how earth-friendly these products can be, check out this page for more information, including links and a video. When you love M&M Wintergreens Inc. products, you are in a sense, loving our planet. And who doesn't want more love in and for this world?