Based in Fresno, California, Leon Kaye is a business writer and strategic communications specialist. He has also been featured in The Guardian, Sustainable Brands and CleanTechnica. When he has time, he shares his thoughts on his own site, GreenGoPost.com. Contact him at leon@greengopost.com. You can also reach out via Twitter (@LeonKaye) and Instagram (GreenGoPost).

Imperfect foods, food waste, crowdfunding, ugly fruits and vegetables, CSA, Leon Kaye, waste diversion

Imperfect Foods Wants You to Buy Ugly Fruits and Vegetables

For those of us who are or have indulged in gardening, misshapen fruits and vegetables can be one of the joys of growing your own food. But as a society, something gets lost in translation when we go to the local supermarket or warehouse store: We expect our fruits and vegetables to be uniform in color, size and texture. To that end, the Oakland, California, startup Imperfect Foods is trying to change attitudes toward funny-looking fruits and vegetables while increasing waste diversion.

Method, LEED, clean energy, Chicago, south side soapbox, Leon Kaye, wind power, solar, urban farming, green roof, sustainability, Gotham Greens

Method Opens LEED Platinum Factory in Chicago

One year after announcing its plan, Method opened its South Side Soapbox factory last week in the Pullman Park district of Chicago. Cradle-to-Cradle pioneer William McDonough + Partners designed the factory, the first such LEED Platinum certified facility within this sector.

Unilever, Lifebuoy, handwashing, sanitation, India, Sustainable Living Plan, child mortality, early childhood mortality, diarrhea, Madhya Pradesh, Thesgora

Unilever’s Handwashing Campaign Goes Beyond CSR and Saves Lives

For several years running, India’s Unilever and Lifebuoy employees have been instrumental in running one of the country’s most successful social responsibility programs. The brilliance of this handwashing campaign is in its simplicity: It teaches and reinforces a task that takes about 20 seconds.

China, NRDC, Clean By Design, HM, Target, Levi Strauss, Gap, supply chain, Leon Kaye, garment industry, textiles, fashion

A Sustainable Supply Chain in the Garment Industry Saves 4 Major Companies $15M Annually

The global textile and garment industry is one of the world’s largest polluters due to its massive impacts on water, soil and of course, people. While consumers are becoming more aware that their fashion choices have on distant places such as Bangladesh, China and India, much work still needs to be done until the industry can be truly described as responsible and sustainable.

Whirlpool, Habitat for Humanity, corporate social responsibility, cause marketing, Leon Kaye, corporate citizenship

Whirlpool and Habitat for Humanity Partnership: True Corporate Giving

What began with appliance donations has become one of Whirlpool’s most successful corporate social responsibility programs. It is hard to argue with the numbers: over US$85 million in donations since 1999, 8,000-plus company employees who have volunteered with Habitat for Humanity, and a renewed lease on life for over 100,000 families.

Denim, blue jeans, California drought, water scarcity, fashion, Levi Strauss, Leon Kaye, supply chain

California Drought Threatens Los Angeles Denim Industry

About 80 percent of California’s water sustains agriculture, but Sacramento is putting the onus on the state’s businesses and residents to find even more ways to conserve this precious resource. One sector scrambling to find even more ways to conserve water is Los Angeles’ denim industry.

Philip Morris, smoking, tobacco, smoking bans, tobacco, Uruguay, Gates Foundation, International Center for Settlement of Investment Disputes, ICSID, Bloomberg Philanthropies, Leon Kaye

Philip Morris Sues Uruguay Over Anti-Smoking Campaign

One can surmise the many things tobacco companies have in common with fast food corporations, including the fact they must expand their business abroad while sales stagnate on both sides of the Atlantic. The result is that the World Health Organization estimates that 70 percent of the 8.4 million deaths that will be attributed tobacco use in 2020 will occur in developing countries. One country that has long run an aggressive anti-smoking campaign is Uruguay, but its laws are under threat by a lawsuit filed by Philip Morris International.

Lowe’s, Friends of the earth, bees, neonicotinoids, neonics, Leon Kaye, pesticides, retailers, Trillium Asset Management, Domini Shareholder Investments, shareholder activisim

Lowe’s to Stop Using Bee-Killing Pesticides

Shareholder activism made a difference again with yesterday’s announcement that Lowe’s will phase out the sale of neonicotinoid pesticides. Also referred to as “neonics,” which environmental watchdog groups said have been a leading contributor to “colony collapse disorder.” As the populations of bees have declined worldwide, these chemicals are often still sprayed on nursery plants, and are also in pesticides sold on store shelves

YesWeCode, computer science, hackathons, social enterprise, Leon Kaye, coding, STEM, STEM inclusion, Detroit, SAP, Twitter Chat, Twitter

The STEM Jobs Gap and Minority Youth Engagement

#YesWeCode, led by Van Jones, advocates for STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) inclusion and wider access to computer science education for minority students across the country.

Recycling, plastic, oil prices, Leon Kaye, plastic recycling, PET, sustainability

Plastic Recycling Suffers from Lingering Low Oil Price

While solar and wind power continue to become more competitive in price to fossil fuels, the same is not holding true for plastics. The sudden drop in fossil fuel prices over the last several months have sent plastic recyclers scrambling to save their businesses. From China to Quebec, recycling companies have been struggling to stay in the black, even though more municipalities are mandating recycling for either waste diversion purposes or to stay compliant with a local sustainability plan.

Driscolls, Sakuma Berries, Leon Kaye, farmworkers, boycott, Familias Unidas por la Justia, farming, supply chain

Farmworkers’ Union Calls for Boycott Against Driscoll’s

Driscoll’s organic blackberries, strawberries and raspberries can be found in grocery stores throughout the country. Though they are environmentally friendly, a farmworkers’ union in Washington State has recently called for a consumer boycott, citing unfair working conditions.

Palm oil, RSPO, Yum Brands, KFC, Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, transparency, human rights, Leon Kaye, fast food

Yum! Brands Commits to 100 Percent Responsible Palm Oil

The purveyor of KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell says it will ensure its suppliers meet guidelines set by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO). Yum! Brands’ announcement comes fresh off yet another report that showed large companies have a long way to go when it comes to sustainable palm oil.