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  • Grow with us this Spring

    Spring has Sprung at Sustainable.co.za and we are celebrating in style this year.  To kick off for Arbor Week we have challenged our team to grow their own Bonsai Trees (from seed nogal). Indigenous trees only, of course, including the African Baobab, the Wisteria and the White Stinkwood Tree. Keep a close eye on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for more updates. Can we just mention that we love trees? If you are interested in planting something yourself, contact Seeds for Africa, a really great website with a wide range of options. If you are not much of a gardener, why not donate some trees at GreenPop? Every bit counts.

    A Little Something Extra

    We love Spring and we love our customers, so we will be including a little extra something in our parcels this season. Let us know if you receive one by sending a picture to our Facebook Page. We would love to know what you think!

    Save Water this Spring

    If you are in the Cape, you will be aware that we haven't had enough rain to fill our dams. With Summer fast approaching, let's make a concerted effort to save our water. In fact, everyone should make a concerted effort to save water as it is a valuable resource and very noticeable when it is not readily available. Check out our previous blog about Water Saving here. We have made an effort to source good quality products and a wide range of options for your convenience. Check them out here. My personal favourite is the Water Pebble. We have had so many enquiries about shower timers that we have kept our eyes open for a good quality solution and here it is. We will be extending our Free Delivery campaign in Cape Town so ordering from us has become a lot more convenient.

    Now's the Time to Invest

    Of course, with the days getting longer and the sun out in full force, what is better than investing in solar? Replace your outdoor lights with our amazing range of  ambient Solar Lights that not only light up the garden but create a great atmosphere. Check out the range here. We are also pleased to announce that we will be running an amazing Spring Special on our complete range of Blue Nova Lithium Ion batteries. With a warranty of 10 years, it's a great time to invest. We will also be running specials on a wide range of products to get you into the swing of Spring so have a look.

    Heritage Day

    And last but not least, we will be celebrating Heritage Day or Braai Day with an exciting giveaway. You will stand a chance to win one of three prizes made up of the following must-have products. A 5Kg Box of Ecologs and a pack of Eco Fire Lighters. These have been a firm favourite in our office this Winter. They produce little to no smell and the coals remain hotter for longer. We have also added a Solar Buddy for night time braais AND a Kitchen Tap Aerator to reduce water usage when preparing the food. Keep an eye on our Social Media Pages and enter the giveaway here.

    Hope Springs Eternal

    Budding green leaves, colourful flowers, a fresh chill in the air, longer days and baby animals everywhere, bring about renewed hope for all. Keep fighting the good fight. Green is a lifestyle not a colour.

  • July is Madiba Month at Sustainable.co.za

    July is Madiba Month at Sustainable.co.zaAs everyone is well aware, Tata Madiba's birthday is on the 18th of July. At Sustainable.co.za, we love what Madiba Day stands for so we have decided to dedicate the month of July to Madiba and challenge everyone else to do the same!

    In the spirit of this, our team have dedicated themselves to 67 random acts of kindness in July. You can follow our progress via the checklist below. We will post evidence of our deeds to our Social Media accounts so keep an eye out!

    67 Random Acts of Kindness Checklist

    1. Buy the Big Issue
    The Big Issue is a socially responsible non-profit organisation that enables willing unemployed and marginalised adults to take responsibility for their own lives through a developmental employment programme. You can read more about them here. We will be on the lookout for a Big Issue vendor and will purchase all their stock.

    2-7. Free Hugs
    Each team member will hold up a cardboard sign offering free hugs in a busy area at lunch time for 67 minutes.

    8-17. 10 x blankets for the homeless
    We will be purchasing 10 blankets and will be on the lookout for destitute people to give them to.

    18-23. Free sandwiches
    Each team member will be making a sandwich and give it to someone in need.

    24 -33. Knit 10 x scarves
    Winter is cold, so we will be knitting 10 scarves to offer with the blankets.

    34. Put a complete category of products on special in July only.
    Check out the range here.

    35 - 44. Ship 10 Hampers for free to any charity of buyer's choice.
    Purchase a Hamper here for a charity of your choice and we will ship them to any main area in South Africa for free.

    45. Donation
    We will be donating a percentage of our sales income in July to the Nelson Mandela Foundation.

    46 - 55. Help animals in need.
    We will be donating various goods to Shaygam's Shelter in Hout Bay. See more about Shaygam's Shelter here.

    56 - 57. 2 x Team Members to donate blood.
    Zeke and Sian have very kindly offered to donate blood at the Blood Bank in Blue Route Mall.

    58 - 67. Sponsor ten trees on Greenpop
    Greenpop is a social enterprise planting trees, growing food and educating for action across Southern Africa. We will be sponsoring 10 trees to be planted in reforestation projects across Southern Africa. Check them out here.

    " A fundamental concern for others in our individual and community lives would go a long way in making the world the better place we so passionately dreamt of. " ~ Nelson Mandela

  • Tips to winter-proof your home

    Is it possible to save money running your household during winter? It is, and here are a few tips to make your home more eco-friendly and save money at the same time!

    Use existing insulation
    As soon as the sun begins setting, close curtains and blinds to keep warmth inside bedrooms and living spaces. It will mean your interior stays warmer for longer and will mean switching heaters on only if essential.

    Replace and switch off
    Replace all light bulbs with LED. Turn off lights, plugs and especially electric blankets and heaters when not using them. Just these few things can reduce your home’s electricity consumption by 15%.

    Lose 1 degree Celsius
    While going solar is ideal, turning your geyser down by 1 degree and switching it off during the middle of the day can make a difference. This can provide estimated savings of R100 a week on your electricity bill. Take it further and investigate using geyser blankets and timer switchers.

    Get a Spindel
    Doing laundry in winter is very costly if you are using a tumble dryer, so rather use a Spindel. It’s an innovative dryer that uses spin power instead of heat to remove up to 80% of the leftover moisture from clothes in just three minutes. Laundry dries in a fraction of the time and it uses 100 times less electricity than tumble drying. Spindel is also safe for all fabrics – perfect for those winter woollens and hand washed delicates.

  • How to recycle grey water around your home

    By now you may be well aware that certain municipalities have placed strict limits on water consumption as dam levels have shrunk to alarming percentages over the last couple of months. And, with parts of South Africa still caught in the grip of drought, water conservation should be a top priority for all citizens. Even if you live in a region where water is slightly more abundant, your household is urged to reduce its water footprint.

    Not only will water conservation help lower your utility bill so you don't have to turn to a Personal Loan to make ends meet, but grey water recycling can also help prevent water pollution in local dams and lakes. In this article, written in collaboration with Hippo.co.za, we present ways how you can put grey water to good use. These tips are adapted from Hippo.co.za's original post How to Save Water and Recycle Grey Water in Your Home.

    What is grey water?

    Grey water is usually meant to go down the drain after you are done showering, bathing, doing the dishes or the laundry. It is waste water that contains relatively small amounts of chemicals from soaps, shampoos, and washing powders, which can be safely reused to keep your car shiny or your grass looking great.

    How to harvest grey water manually

    Usable waste water can be captured with minimal manual input through a grey water system; however, these can cost a pretty penny. Fortunately, extracting grey water can be done without special equipment if you’re willing to put in the effort.

    • After washing the dishes, use a dish pan to scoop water out of the basin and into a bucket.
    • If you're washing your hands or rinsing vegetables, place a bucket under the tap to collect the water.
    • When showering, place a bucket in the shower with you.
    • Connect the drain hose of your washing machine to the sealed laundry sink where you can collect the water. If possible, point the drain hose directly to nearby plants if the water can flow into that direction without creating a mess.
    • Unused water from your pet's bowl can be emptied directly into pot plants.

    Grey water systems

    You can opt to have a grey water system do all the work for you. When installing a grey water device, you can consider either a diversion system or a greywater treatment system. Diversion systems distribute grey water without using biological processes to convert the water into a purer form. This system normally transports grey water directly to the garden or toilet; however, they can also be equipped with a surge tank to help leverage the pressure of water flow as well as filters to remove particles such as hair from the pipes.

    A greywater treatment system goes the extra mile by disinfecting and removing all chemicals from the grey water, which can be used for laundry or your irrigation system. This option is more viable if you need to use the water for a vegetable garden or if your area is severely affected by water shortages when you can put purified grey water to other uses besides the garden or your car. Water is a valuable resource which is why it's vital for everyone to do their bit in making sure each drop counts. For additional water saving tips, read the full article on Hippo.co.za's blog.

  • Water, Water Everywhere but not a Drop to Spare

    With 2016 experiencing the lowest rainfall recorded in South African history and water restrictions implemented nationwide, it is no wonder that there is a growing number of people concerned about the future of our most precious commodity - water.

    At Sustainable.co.za, we have turned our focus to providing the latest and most affordable options to save water in your own home. We also have a few tricks up our sleeve for those who are not in a position to buy the goods but still want to be a part of the solution.

    First and foremost, you must try to reuse water at home, this can be done in the following ways:

    • * Endeavour to buy eco-friendly detergents and soaps so that the water is safe for your garden.
    • * Put a small amount of water in your bathroom basin so people can use this to wash their hands.
    • * Shower for 5 minutes or less.
    • * Leave a bucket in the shower and cover the drain with it so that it collects the excess water.
    • * Switch off the shower when washing your hair or body.
    • * Fill the kitchen sink with water in the morning and reuse to wash dishes. If it gets cold, take some of it out with a jug and boil it.
    • * Try not to flush the toilet too often - if it is yellow, let it mellow (maximum of three uses), if it is brown, flush it down.
    • * At the end of the day, the water from the shower, sink and basin can be used in your garden or to fill your cistern.
    • * Put a brick or a 2litre bottle of water into your cistern. This will reduce the capacity of the tank and thus use less water.
    • * Try not to bath, but if this is all you have, ensure that it is a shallow one and reuse the water as above.
    • * Do not top up your pool unless you are using recycled water.
    • * Use a pool cover on your pool to prevent evaporation. Please ensure that this is safe for children and animals.

    Continue reading

  • Rediscovering Hemp

    Agricultural field of industrial hempNot just another green hype, hemp could replace cotton as one of the main sources of fibre for the textile and paper industry. The incredible efficiency of this crop is partly the reason competing industries in the USA campaigned for its ban in the 1930s. Without getting into the controversies surrounding the legislation of hemp farming, let’s take a look at some of the obvious advantages of hemp as a crop and textile.

    Cultivationbag

    Remarkably hemp produces 200 – 250% more fibre per area compared to cotton, using about half the water. Cotton accounts for about 25% of global pesticide use posing various environmental and health hazards. Hemp on the other hand can be cultivated without any use of pesticides or herbicides, in fact it’s known to be effective in suppressing weed due to its thick high growth. In little more than three months, hemp can grow up to four metres high, the bast fibres from the bark gets harvested for textile and the hurd in the core utilised in the paper industry.

    fibre2Textile

    Tired of a new garments wearing out after just a couple of washes? Hemp is proven to be three times stronger than cotton. It offers the greatest UV protection of any natural fabric and has excellent breathing properties. In addition, hemp absorbs and dissipates moisture at a greater rate than cotton making it ideal for the coming summer. While not as soft, hemp does improve with wear and after every wash but is best combined with cotton in garments. Naturally, hemp is ideal for bags and backpacks and can be viewed here together with other accessories from Hemporium.

    Hemporium is the leading provider of hemp products in South Africa and is on the forefront of hemp research and innovation. Their partnership with the trial farm near Wellington is providing valuable insight on the commercial viability of the crop and is an important stepping stone for cultivation as a sustainable South African commodity. We're proud to now be listing and promoting Hemporium products - an investment in eco-quality that’s proven to stand the test of time.

  • If I could, I would buy you the Earth...

    Well now you can. Christmas is a time for giving and the best investment you can make for your family is to "buy the earth" back.

    At Sustainable.co.za, we believe that green living should be easy and add to your lifestyle rather than detract. Our little elves spend all their time ensuring that we not only have an expansive range of high quality, cost effective products available, but that there is something for everyone.

    With warm Summer evenings, festive cheer filling the streets, and long, lazy days surrounded by family and loved ones, we certainly are lucky to spend this joyous day in the Southern Hemisphere.

    christmas-in-summerThe Gift of Christmas

    We understand that Christmas gift shopping can be stressful with long queues, packed shopping centres and low or no stock available, it is not a very relaxing thought at a time of year when we need it most. Online shopping greatly alleviates this stress. Browse through our range at any time of day, ask advice and get everything delivered right  to your doorstep from the comfort of your own home. Continue reading

  • Festive Eco-Challenge with Sustainable.co.za (Closed)

    festive-eco-870-300This year, we want to give back to you to say thank you for your loyal support. Join us in our weekly Festive Eco Challenge and you could be walking away with a product of your choice. Make your festive season just that little more special this year with your very own eco-gift. Continue reading

  • Shining the Spotlight on Solar Powered Security Solutions

    The regular South African home boasts a number of electricity dependent security features. From alarms to security lights, electric fencing to laser sensors, remaining safety conscious is, unfortunately, an important part of daily living. As a result, power cuts aren't only a disturbance to our comfort and convenience, but can place us in a somewhat vulnerable position as well. A home with no functioning alarms, electric fencing or lights makes it a prime target for potential burglaries.

    Thankfully, modern technology allows us alternative safety measures for when regular power isn't an option. Products such as solar powered security lights, battery operated and solar powered indoor and outdoor lights, as well as solar powered alarm system kits, all help to decrease vulnerability and ease nervous minds during load shedding periods.

    If you’d like to improve your home security when regular power isn't an option, here are a few practical solutions you may want to consider:

    Alarm Solar Kit

    Solar Powered Alarm System Kit

    A solar powered solution for the standard alarm system, this kit is conveniently packaged and easy to install. It is able to effectively power the standard alarm system during load shedding. The kit does not include the alarm system, as its purpose is to power an already existing standard home alarm.

    Price excl. VAT: R3,848.25

    Price incl. VAT: R4,387.01

     

     

     

    Solar Wall Light

    Solar Powered Security Light: Wall Mounted

    Ensure your pathways and thoroughfares are lit up when it counts with this wall mounted solar light fixture. A passive, infra-red motion sensor switches on at night when motion is detected, promising little room for shady activity. This compact light is easy to install, requiring only a vertical surface, and can detect movement for up to 7 metres. A solar panel built into the case powers this light entirely.

    Price excl. VAT: R638.60

    Price incl. VAT: R728.00

     

     

    Solar Security Floodlight

    The miSolar Solar Powered Security Floodlights Range

    Ideal for businesses, schools or larger gardens, miSolar floodlights light up areas ranging between 100m2 to 300m2. Different options are available in various sizes, and each comes with a solar panel and battery. These solar powered floodlights can be connected to a pole or wall-mounted.

    Prices range from R1993.01 to R12458.00.

     

     

     

     

    Solar Gate Kit

    Solar Powered Gate System Kit

    Don’t get stuck in a tight spot when load shedding strikes. This solar powered solution for automated gate systems will help to guarantee that you never end up stuck on the wrong side of the gate. This kit is able to operate a 12Vdc gate motor, is easy to install and is conveniently packaged. The standard backup battery on the gate motor is replaced with the battery included in this unit. (This kit does not include the gate motor itself.)

    Price excl. VAT: R5731.58

    Price incl. VAT: R6534.00

     

     

    Cornet Solar Light

    Cornet Hanging Solar Light

    The unique design of the Cornet Hanging Solar Light was inspired by the Scandinavian tradition of making Cornets, cone shaped paper cups designed to hold sweets and hang on the branches of Christmas trees. This simple, solar powered light provides dark spaces with soft light. The little lamps are ideal for hanging off tree branches or other fixtures in darker corners of your premises – where a little light could go a long way.

    Price excl. VAT: R162.28

    Price incl. VAT: R185.00

  • Top 5 Eco-Friendly Corporate Gift Ideas

    corporate gifting green

    The holiday season is approaching fast and more businesses than ever before are forsaking the traditional corporate gifts of watches and branded pens and are giving the gift of green this the festive season. Be eco-conscious come Christmas time and consider gifting clients and business partners some awesome earth-friendly gadgets instead.

     

    Gifting’s Gone Green

    No matter what industry you’re in, businesses have an impact on the earth. Whether it’s the paper you print your reports on, the cars you drive to the office or something bigger; no one is free from the infamous carbon footprint. It’s for this reason that companies across the globe are showing their love for green and instead of going for the generic gift this year, are choosing earth-friendly presents for their business associates.

    For a unique spin, show them your creative side and get them a branded gift they can actually use. Our friends at WWF had the right idea with their personalised solar jars. Light up the way for your clients and bring them into the world of green living.

    wwf sunjar

    5 Gift Ideas:

    No matter who you’re sending a gift to this season, you can do it the sustainable way with some awesome eco-friendly gift ideas:

     

    UV Monkey

    uv monkeyIf your work associates are already solar junkies, the UV monkey is the ideal gift this season. This nifty little gadget has a chemical compound in its core which changes colour to indicate the UV intensity of the sun - the stronger the colour - the more effective your solar chargers and gadgets will be!

    World Panel Solar Charging Kit

    If you ask any professional what their most valued asset is, you’ll most likely find a large majority saying their smartphone. Unfortunately for us, the smartphone’s notoriously short battery life often has us scrambling to find a plug before we lose connection completely. But not with the World Panel solar charging kit from Sustainable.co.za. This handy little device helps you charge your phone or tablet on the go. An off-grid charging solution capable of charging up to 6 cell phones per day. It is water proof, weather proof, heat and UV stable and can be used on smart phones.

    Mr Handsfree Blur Solar Car Kit

    blue solar car kitMr Handsfree Blue Solar is a solar powered, hands free car kit. This is an ideal present for businessmen who spend a lot of time travelling from one spot to the next. With Multipoint technology, this device lets you connect and use two cell phones simultaneously. All you have to do is attach the Blue Solar to the windscreen of your car with the suction cups and it's ready to use. Thanks to the solar panel, the car kit charges continuously so you hardly ever have to use the included USB and car charger.

    Solar Jar

    solar consol jars

    A unique gift choice for corporate gifting is this Solar Jar. Brand these with your corporate logo for a personalised touch. In the day, leave your Sun Jar outside - or in a sunny window for several hours to charge to create soft lighting decoration. Made with beautiful 1 litre Consol Jars, this alternative light source is literally bottled sunshine. Solar powered LED lights are powered by sunlight which is harnessed through solar panelling fitted on the lid.

    Wireless Indoor/Outdoor Thermometer

    solar thermometerIn South Africa, there’s nothing that affects us quite like the weather. For the more outdoor-conscious, gift the, this nifty wireless indoor/outdoor thermometer. The Wh100 Thermometer is an indoor/ outdoor temperature and humidity metre. The unit includes a sensor that can be mounted outdoors and an indoor base station for easy access.
    If you’re thinking of what to gift this season, why not make the green choice and give your business associates something to remember you by. Oder online at Sustainable.co.za for bulk orders of these awesome gadgets.

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