Branding for Good - Issue 33

17 Dec 2012|Added Value

Welcome to Added Value’s newsletter focused on Sustainable marketing; the challenges, opportunities, our solutions and points of view.
Up until the last minute, it looked like the Democrats and the Republicans would make the news for what they weren’t saying in the US elections.  The Guardian called climate change the “elephant in the room” in the race to election. Then Super Storm Sandy changed all that. While the devastating aftermath could not be solely attributed to climate change, it became difficult to ignore the possible correlation. When Mayor Bloomberg of NY endorsed President Obama explicitly for his climate change efforts, the environment  leapt back onto the public agenda. We will watch this space…

On the brand scene, Sainsbury’s has announced that it now has over 69,500 solar panels on 169 of its stores in the UK, making it the top solar generator in Europe; Waitrose’s Christmas campaign gives more to charitable causes (including their Ad spend);  Gucci has launched Sustainable Soles, a special edition of compostable shoes;  and multinationals Anglo American, Danone, Grupo Maggi, PepsiCo, Natura, Vale, Votorantim, and Walmart are trying to reconcile conservation and commerce in the Amazon rainforest with their new partnership, the Brazilian Business and Ecosystem Services Partnership (PESE). The big eight will review their operations and supply chains to lighten their environmental footprints.

Kudos goes to Wal-Mart who is using their supply chain leverage to drive down energy use on laptops. They have committed to evolve from 30% to 100% of their laptops sold with advanced energy-savings settings (the speed at which the computer ‘goes to sleep’) by Christmas. Given that most consumers never change those settings, this single product shift will both save consumers money on their electric bills and reduce CO2 emissions by hundreds of thousands of metric tons..

Interface, a company at the cutting edge of sustainable design continues to surprise and amaze with their innovative thinking. Realising that floor covering can help their purchasers, frequently building owners, come closer to their goal of energy positivity, their latest innovation is a node installed in the corner of each section of their modular carpets. This node is in fact a sensor that can monitor movement in the building and give feedback , so that buildings can get “smarter” and  turn down lights and thermostats when there is no human presence.

GE Healthcare’s V-Scan, a low-cost battery powered, handheld ultrasound is on route to revolutionizing medical care, bringing low cost diagnostics to millions of patients worldwide.  The device, created for the Chinese market, enables women (who once had to travel up to 36 hours by bus to reach a hospital) to receive crucial ultrasound examination in their own villages. But today, the portable device is also being used in American emergency rooms and by paramedics to locate internal bleeding and blood clots that allow medical personnel to make the right decisions faster.

Spotlight on South Africa
With South Africa contributing up to 50% of the continent’s CO2 emissions (as much as the United Kingdom but at less than one-sixth of the GDP), there is a growing awareness of ethical and green issues.  Inka Crosswaite, cultural insight specialist with Added Value Cape Town delves into what the word ‘sustainability’ means in South Africa. Click here to read more…

Eco Innovations
Shedding new light on old clothes; motion sensor webcams; a solution to aching feet; solar powered kiosks; and waging war on food waste . We bring you our pick of sustainable innovations making an impact around the world. Take a look…

We’ll be back in the New Year with more sustainable marketing points of view. And if you’d like to get in touch with us, please email


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