For all of our readers out there who are serious fans of granola, like I am, here’s a LiveGreen article for you! This week’s spotlight comes on the heels of a trip to my local grocery store, Wegmans. While there, shopping like I would on any other Saturday morning, I came across something that was not the norm for me and my Wegmans — there was a promotional stand set up in near the grains section. Immediately sparking my interest, I rode my curiosity on over to the stand to see what was up.  I met a great guy who offered me samples of and explained the mission of Michele’s Granola, a small Maryland company who is vegan, organic, and most inspiringly, GREEN. Needless to say, between the small talk and the tastings, I fell in love and walked away with two bags myself. But now, I’d like to delve a bit deeper into who Michele’s is…

Michele's Granola

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Born from the experimentation sessions of a granola-crazed, self-taught baker, Michele’s Granola has grown from a one-woman stand at local farmer’s markets, to an operation which now produces about 5,000 pounds of product to serve its nearly 200 community retail outlets (markets, grocers, & other food service facilities).  Michele’s is dedicated to using 100% organic whole grains in its homemade style processes of production, guaranteeing the best tasting and most healthy granola possible.  But the brand’s mission does not end there.

Its baking facility currently runs 100% on wind power!  Amazing right? Yes. But what is even more amazing is that Michele’s also uses delivery vehicles that run on re-used vegetable oil from the deep fryers of local eateries.  Outstanding!  And as if this all weren’t enough already, Michele’s estimates that not only does 40% of its waste get recycled by traditional methods, but another 40% is sent to a local composting center to be used in the production of fertile soils (that are then used in Baltimore’s urban farming projects).

It is amazing that a young company like Michele’s Granola can be so committed to making a difference in the ways of green, especially within their local ecological and business environments.  They are a testament to the notion that the triple bottom line business methodology — Profit, People, and Planet — can prove successful beyond measure.  Here at LiveGreenBeGreen, we would like to firstly acknowledge the company’s great work and great product, and secondly, we want to extend the utmost respect and gratitude to Michele’s Granola for its initiatives and actions to do greener business.  Good luck, and God speed!

To read more about Michele’s Granola, or to enquire about how to get your hands on this scrumptious and socially-evolved health snack, visit the company’s official site at:



How about this for an idea. Let’s make a mode of transportation that is ideal for huge metropolis’, has no impact on the environment, and is made completely from recyclable materials. Oh yea, and it has to cost less than $20. As crazy as this checklist sounds, a man by the name of Izhar Gafni has created just that in the form of a full functioning cardboard bicycle.

After witnessing a prototype for a cardboard canoe, Gafni used his engineering background to construct a similar prototype for a bicycle. Similar to origami, in which each fold can up to triple the strength of the apparatus, the bicycle can hold up to 308lbs or 140kgs. The end result is that Gafni has created a mode of transportation that is lightweight, utilizes completely recyclable materials, and costs under $20. In order to weatherproof the bicycle, an application of paint and water sealant is used so that the cardboard itself is not turned to pulp.

The greatest potential impact the bicycle can have is in bustling cities already ripe with congestion and smog. The cardboard bicycle provides a clean and efficient way for getting from point A to B while also saving natural resources. And while its price tag seems inexpensive enough as it is, some governmental recycling programs could even make the device free in certain countries. Overall, not only is this idea genius for its use of recyclable materials, but more importantly because it does not sacrifice functionality or cost in order to do so.




With autumn upon us we can look forward to apple cider, jack-o-lanterns, and pumpkin flavored anything.  But with all this goodness comes fall cleanup that is, picking up all the leaves that nature leaves behind (no pun intended). These treats are nature’s way of taking a poop in our backyards. That being said there is a lot that we can do with leaves to maintain a green environment.

One of these benefits is composting. In many instances, the primary waves we dispose of leaves are through incineration or dumping them in the garbage. Yet reusing and utilizing leaves as a compost can do wonders for the backyard garden and the environment.  Suchg benefits include creating a natural tilling, turning, and aeration of the soil. According to Jennifer Hetrick over at reading, successful composting requires:

“…A 30-to-1 ratio of brown and green materials. Brown materials can be fallen leaves, twigs, chipped brush, perennial clippings and wood chips. Green materials would encompass grass cuttings, used coffee grounds, weeds and kitchen leftovers like vegetables or fruit.”

Clearly all of us can do it, all we need is a conscious effort in doing so. But thinking of some previous articles we’ve written here on recyclable materials and using them in non-traditional ways, maybe there is a way to transform leaves into new clothing. Plastic bottles have been shown to be successful in creating such a fabric so why not your backyard leaves? Experimenting with such a new material may lead to new and innovative fabric and a sustainable way of using leaves. More importantly however, whether it’s composting or creating fabric for clothing, by doing these actions we are taking one step closer to where we all live green, and be green.



Nowadays, musical artist is always in the spotlight. (Dare I say it he Just Can’t Get Enough”). Besides performing at the Superbowl halftime show alongside the “Black Eyed Peas” he has also turned himself into quite the actor, where he has appeared in films such as Madagascar 2: Escape to Africa, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, and Date Night. However, this entertainment cameleon’s most important contribution to society occurred yesterday when he teamed up with Coca-Cola to launch a green business known as “Ekocycle.”

The new brand will offer high quality products generated from recycled goods. In starting the company, is focusing on generating buzz and popularity within the mainstream around sustainable, yet visually-stimulating products. In a recent interview the artist stated that the current market for recycled products are not “cool” and stressed, “You have to bring some art and fashion sensibility into this technology that turns a bottle into something cool.” The company will offer an assortment of goods including Dr. Dre’s “Beats” headphones and a clothing line, all made from recycled goods.

Ekocycle’s other founding partner, Coca-Cola, has been a pioneer in recycling efforts through its “Give It Back” and “Recyclebank” programs. (For more info check out the link below). In order to promote the sustainability movement, the company has vowed to donate a portion of its licensing products (a minimum of $1 million) to charities involved in recycle and community engagement. Such a partnership is a win-win for the green movement as the high-quality and aesthetics of the Ekocycle brand will draw consumers in and engage them in the movement. In addition, having as not only a spokesman but founding partner will engage the youth in a movement which requires energy and influence. Despite not being a favorite artist of mine, the key in’s  involvement is that he can draw in an audience that is poised to make a difference in the world. His popularity among the youth will inspire others to commit to the green movement via the Ekocycle brand. A celebrity advocate such as is a necessary cog in achieving global sustainability, and will help draw the movement closer to a day where we can all live green, and be green.


Every business in today’s world, big and small alike, is practically forced to partake in some form of information technology services in order to remain relevant and survive.  I have used some form of IT services, I have worked in related fields, and I know many people who work in IT services, some of whom I call dear friends.  What I did not know, however, was that there were ways in which these services can be delivered as eco-friendly.  Did you?

Companies like SHI International – headquartered in Somerset, NJ, with branches across Canada, the United Kingdom, France, and Hong Kong – are working hard to provide their green IT services to corporate customers, without harming the environment or their customers’ budgets.  SHI works alongside its customers, going so far as to ensure that, within appropriate territories, their customers’ sites operate under adequate conditions to be eligible for incentives from willing utility providers.

SHI even goes so far as to operate in an eco-friendly manner.  Within all their restrooms, a visitor will find green soaps and recycled paper products.  The company attempts to reuse all shipping materials, provided they can withstand the trip.  Timers operate facility lighting across their plants.  These small steps are very admirable among businesses and are too often overlooked, even with today’s understanding of their significance.  Bravo.

Establishing a green home does not happen overnight but requires planning, commitment and practice.  Summertime is a great time to start this endeavor.  School is out, and the household is functioning at a slower pace than normal.  This also is a teachable moment for both the adults and children in the family.  The family can start with an outing to the local landfill.  Just seeing the huge mounds of discarded plastics, electronics and other trash is an eye-opening experience.  It effectively and dramaticallyquantifies the overall effect of one household’s trash at the curb combined with the whole area’s trash at a single location.  Just think– this is only one of the landfills in this county alone!

Each family’s efforts towards living green represents a positive step in the right direction.  It is best to start with a master plan.  It can be as simple as first committing to reuse.  Using washable cleaning towels as opposed to paper towels goes a long way as does the incorporation of reusable items such as mugs, plates, cups and water bottles.  Consider the purchase of products such as liquid soap in bulk and refillable decorative bottles.  Donating clothing, toys, household items and electronics to charities serves the dual process of helping others who are less fortunate, as well as keeping these items out of the landfill.  These practices alone will substantially reduce the number of articles going in the trash and on to the landfill.

Summer vacation also is an excellent time to examine your energy and water usage and to make cost-cutting changes.  This is a great time to take a trip to the hardware store to learn about and to invest in energy-efficient lighting and appliances.  If a new appliance is on the shopping list, make sure it it an energy star product.  These products are very energy efficient and will save money in the long run.  This also is a good time to invest in energy-efficient light bulbs for your home.  Thirdly, take a look at water filters.  An investment in a tap filter negates the need to purchase bottled water, thereby lowering grocery costs and most importantly, reducing the number of plastic bottles taken to the landfill.

Going green in the summer presents several opportunities for families to learn healthier and environmentally friendly ways of living, establish green plans, save money and improve the environment.  So this summer try to live green be green.