In the 1940s chemist Emanuel Goldberg developed the first plastic pipette jars for lab use. These plastic bottles where popular in labs and then soon became popular in the hiking community for their durability. Goldberg then went on to create the company Nalgene that would become famous for their durable plastic water bottles. I use my Nalgene water bottle every day and decided to look up the Nalgene company to see what they are doing to promote sustainability within their company and product and how they portray their message to their customers and the consumer market.
The Nalgene water bottle is a durable, re-usable, plastic water bottle. The bottle is made up recyclable materials such as Tritan, a BPA free plastic. When concern was brought up in the past over using plastics that had the possibilities of containing carcinogens, the company immediately removed those bottles from shelves to make sure that their bottles weren’t harmful to their customers and to keep with their message of being environmentally conscious. A majority of the materials used as well as where the manufacturing is done is here in the U.S. This minimizes the company’s ecological footprint while providing jobs to the American people instead of shipping factories overseas to save money.
Once the bottle is manufactured there is no energy input needed. Maintenance of the bottle is the only input which can be done by washing it by hand with mild detergent. With Nalgene water bottles being so durable they are meant to last. With the durability of the bottles it is easy to steer away from using disposable water bottles that only see one use until they get thrown out.
When on Nalgene’s website they really try to show their customers what their mission is. It starts by showing the history of its start in the lab in the 1940s to when Nalgene Outdoor was born in the 1970s. They then illustrate how many plastic bottles are thrown out in the U.S. and where they all go. It all leads to their question of why Nalgene? With their use of recyclable materials, being made in the U.S., and appeal to being environmentally conscious, the company gives a simple approach to battling the waste issue in our country.
In regard to the triple bottom line, the company is taking strides in all aspects. Environmentally, they are trying to reduce the amount of plastic going into landfills from disposable plastics. Socially, they created a product used by all types of people from hikers to office workers to children. Then, economically they created a product that is inexpensive and can be bought nationwide. It is clear to see Nalgene’s efforts to create a sustainable product and shed light onto the problem our country has with the amount of waste and plastic we generate. While it is still a business trying to make a profit they have made one of their main goals to be a sustainable company as well as help their customers be environmentally conscious.