At Branching Together, our mission is turning trash into treasure for your sustainable journey. This is straightforward enough, but we wanted to break down why we felt this concept plays a critical role in protecting our planet, and how you too can incorporate our mission statement in your sustainable life.
There are SO many areas we can target when it comes to saving our planet, like energy and fossil fuels, food waste, climate education, and so much more. Though these individual issues seem independent of one another, they are all interconnected. Targeting any of these matters opens the door for conversation and action on other environmental problems.
For Branching Together, we spoke to members of our community to find out areas of need for addressing sustainable shortcomings. The resounding response was in regards to waste. Many industries deem certain tasks and shipping impossible without the use of disposable packaging, like 5-gallon buckets, because the short-term cost of disposable materials are lower than that of reusable. In other words, it’s simply the way things are done, and changing that course would require pressure on and change from the entire system. But while we as a society work toward improved long-term solutions to packaging waste, single use items, and other disposable materials, they are still manufactured and disposed of on the daily in mass quantities. That’s where we come in.
Both of us, Cheyenne and Susie, have worked in several industries, food service being a main one. We have witnessed firsthand the volume of 5-gallon buckets utilized and disposed of, and this issue was echoed by businesses we have partnered with as well. At Branching Together, we’re able to prevent a large amount of plastic from ending up in a landfill where they would contribute to further environmental damage. In addition to 5-gallon buckets, we repurpose wood waste into new, reimagined products. When individuals and businesses need wood for a project, it is often simpler to purchase a new product instead of enduring the process of sourcing the scrap wood required for their specific idea. At Branching Together, we’re able to transform scrap wood into unique pieces in an effort to, again, keep it out of the landfill. So why are landfills such a big issue anyway?
What’s the Problem with Landfills?
Landfills are a less than ideal final resting place for any material. The obvious reason is that a large portion of materials that go into landfills are still very usable! The main case against landfills as a first option to throw materials is that they emit greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs), and potentially leachate as a result of the slow and improper breakdown of a variety of materials. Leachate refers to any liquid permeation resulting from deposited waste contained within a landfill, which leads to mass ecological problems if any leachate does escape a landfill. Also, land, air, and water pollution resulting from landfills is detrimental to nearby communities, ecosystems, and even the microclimates where they reside. There are numerous other determinants that can and do wreak havoc on the health of the environment, people, and all other living organisms, which is why finding alternatives to landfills is so essential.
From Trash to Treasure
Branching Together products make it possible to not only keep usable materials from going into landfills, but also offer sustainable solutions to everyday problems or wants. And that’s where the trash into treasure aspect of our mission really comes in! We take these perfectly good pieces of “trash” and turn them into functional products, or “treasure.” Our actions at Branching Together further connect us with natural processes, helps us slow down, and reminds us that we exist because of the beauty and provisions from Earth. Check out our transformed trash and we hope that you continue to take items that may be viewed as trash and turn them into usable items as well so that together we can give these “trashy” materials a long life out of a landfill!
Susie’s Sustainable Tip
I’m not going to lie, I love to shop. But I no longer relish the thought of going to the mall and purchasing new wardrobes of the creations on mannequins. Instead, I’m obsessed with supporting small, sustainable businesses! My favorite way to shop is to start by creating a list in the notes app on my phone of things that I need or want. For example, I love jewelry, so say I’m wanting a new necklace. Instead of giving into that impulse and just heading to the local Target for a new piece, I’ll instead add “necklace” to my list so I can keep an eye out for small businesses on social media or if I stumble across a cute store. This draws out the fun experience of obtaining a new item, and allows me the time to search for a sustainable option, such as the River Rock Necklaces we offer on our website. Happy shopping!