Going Green: Two Local Family Owned Businesses Going Green

Published 07/08 2014 11:10AM

Updated 07/08 2014 11:29AM

WFFT's Tara Petitt visits two local, family owned businesses that have been going green together for nearly half a century.

"We've been around since 1963 so over 50 years."

There's a few things that Fort Wayne's Fox & Fox has in common with one of Fort Wayne's Napa locations, Ridge Company.  They are both family operated, they've both been in business for well over 50 years and they've been doing business together for over 45 years.

Sarah Holtgrave, Office Manager for Fox & Fox, says her family's company tries to produce the least amount of waste possible by reusing and recycling.

"When you get an oil change, you have waste oil and usually you have to dispose of that.  We're able to utilize that to heat our building so in the winter time we can reuse something that would normally be a waste."

By working together, Fox & Fox and Napa are able to make our community a more greener place to live.

"They're progressively minded and we're trying to keep up with them."

Andrew Thomas is the Vice President for Ridge Company NAPA and says, "We drive a lot.  Each vehicle will run about 150 miles a day so it's a lot of miles, it's a lot of gas, and recently we introduced some hybrids into our fleet."

Because Ridge Company Napa is mostly wholesale to the automotive industry, they make a lot of deliveries.  Thomas says the transportation industry accounts for about 30% of all of our greenhouse emissions.

"Out of that 30%, 60% of that comes from light cars and trucks so it's easy to understand where you need to focus."

By finding that focus, Napa purchased 5 hybrids to use for delivery purposes.

"We were able to lower our greenhouse gas emissions by about 400 pounds per day because of the mileage per gallon."

One of the places these cars deliver to is Fox & Fox, one of Ridge Company's largest customers.

"Some of the parts  they provide that we utilize that are green are water based paints."

"It's a water borne product, it's environmentally friendly, it cuts back emissions and VOC's by about 30%."

Thomas says you don't have to drive a hybrid to go green.

"Not in every case are you gonna be able to buy a hybrid or not in every case will you be able to take a vehicle that has a higher MPG, but if we concentrate on doing so when we can, we will have a large impact."

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