Going green makes money

CHARLOTTE SQUIRE
Last updated 13:00 13/02/2013

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Golden Bay's fast growing online natural health product company HealthPost is walking its sustainability talk.

HealthPost has installed 72 photovoltaic panels on the roof of its warehouse so it can generate its own electricity. It is producing 105 per cent of its power, meaning it is feeding power back to the grid.

"There are no batteries needed," said HealthPost director Peter Butler.

"On a cloudy day we can supplement off the grid and any excess that we generate, in the weekends for instance, gets sold back into the grid."

Healthpost is an online supplier of natural health supplements and skincare products.

Based in Collingwood, it send goods every day to people in locations as diverse as Auckland, Sydney, Seoul, Tokyo, London, and Rio de Janeiro.

Mr Butler says their environmental efforts make sound business sense.

"We expect to get a 10 per cent return on the solar power investment, so it's good business from all perspectives."

Lucy Butler, executive director for HealthPost, says she and the team are happy to see the solar panels exceeding expectations.

"We're always trying to minimise our environmental impact and it seemed a clear way to do it.

"We're also very excited to have a new cardboard shredder. Cardboard is our main waste, we can now shred it and use it in packaging.

"We were already recycling but we wanted to directly take care of it. It's nice to stay really close to the source."

Healthpost has a corporate social responsibility policy that includes a template for calculating its carbon footprint.

Mr Butler says this includes the courier delivery to customers, reducing emissions wherever possible, and offsetting the remainder with carbon credits.

"One courier van delivering strategically can actually be more environmentally sound than many individual trips to the shopping centre," he said.

HealthPost also has an annual staff tree planting day. Up to 1000 natives are planted.

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- The Nelson Mail

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