| We first explore the green concept in 2006 by posing a questionaire about what products people want including their willingness to pay more for eco-friendly products (see Celltei 2007 Production Questionaire and Survey). About 70% of those answered the questions were willing to pay from "not too much" to "doesn't matter how much" and most suggested $50 extra. So we set out to learn more about green products and identify eco-friendly fabrics for the first production on selected products in 2007. Well, two years later, with substantially higher oil and commodity prices, the "green concept" is taking on new meaning to us. Perhaps, as Karen C. commented on the questionaire:|
"How environmentally friendly can we get? We need durable material to prevent the need for disposing of junk. If the bag lasts, I'd still buy tons of them in different designs/colors and not throw them in a landfill."
So, here is a broader Green concept we try to adopt in our business:
| What is environmental friendly materials?|
In short, they are materials that do not contain toxic substances harmful to the producers (during production processes), users and our environment. For example, PVC (Polyvinyl chloride), commonly used for coating luggage-grade fabrics, contains toxic substances which are restricted in EC countries but not in the US. PU (Polyurethane)is an biodegradable non-toxic alternative coating materials is hydrolyzed after certain periods and not as durable as PVC. New material such as TPU (Thermoplastic Polyurethane) is a stronger alternative for coating. As textile manufacturers often use different terminologies, a material composite testing report from an independent and reputable testing agent is perhaps a better answer to the eco-friendliness of the materials. Here are the test result of the first to eco-friendly materials we used:
1. Test Report of Black Microfiber with TPU Coating for Desktop Pet Beds
2. Test Report of 600D EPO Coating Green Camouflage Fabric
To have materials made to our specifications, a very large yardage is required at a higher cost. We ask for your patience as we plan our production. For seasonal or limited designs, stock fabric with interesting or fancy print will continue to be used. For certain highly functional design such as the Pak-o-Bird, a strong sturdy nylon fabric is used with double PU coating. Surface of the material are treated for water-resistence. In choosing eco-friendly materials, we must taken into consideration of the product's affordability, durability and decomposability.
How about eco-friendly design?
A carrier is a three-dimensional product that serves a function. An intuitive designer can work together with an experienced craftsman on a design that requires the least construction and materials. With proper reinforcing stitches and pieces at stressed area, a good design can extend the product's lifespan while reducing wastage. Similarly, in the design process, the structure can be carefully planned out in anticipation of the ease of future replacements and repair.
A pet breathes moisture and leave body odors or cumbs inside, a pet carrier is subject to a higher degreee of wear and tear than a regular handbag. An eco-friendly design would consider washability and replacability when deciding on materials used and the proper structure.
Consider also how the product is to be used and therefore what materials and structure should be included?
The best eco-friendly product is one that lasts. For the active pets that go with the owner everyday and also engage in strenous activities, a strong fabric that lasts would be more meaningful.
Have you considered eco-friendly service?
Many consumers buy things that end up in storage because "they are so cheap", "they look so cute" or "they don't match my other stuff" etc. or end up in the garbage because they are defective and offer no service for return or exchange. Celltei is 100% behind our product and take responsibility when a product has problems. We also offer a lot of choices and customization for people to have the exact product they want and enjoy using. We can change this wasteful habit.
Customers can also drop by our place in Brooklyn or mail to our premise a product for repair. If the product is not economical to repair to the level the customer wants, we offer a new product at discount. We will do minimal work to ensure the repair product is a safe product and offer it at repair cost to any interested pet owner.
We also facilitate the second hand market by listing in our site's Trading Post posting by customers who want to sell an used Celltei product.