A common question we are asked at Jedwards International is if our raw ingredients are sourced from producers that adhere to sustainable or responsibly harvested practices. This company, a family run organization, takes sustainability very seriously. Our approach involves two fundamental goals: to operate with renewable energy and eco-friendly practices at our corporate headquarters and to sell products that sustain our resources and the environment.
The definition of sustainability comes from the UN World Commission on Environment and Development: “sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” Sustainable practices support ecological, human, and economic health and vitality.
In an effort to meet the first of our goals, our facility here in Braintree, Massachusetts had major reconstruction done before relocating. The building was enhanced with ”going green” in mind. The renewable systems that were installed are a geothermal heating/cooling system, an energy recovery ventilator, and an eco-friendly hot water and warming room system. The other major factors that add to our efforts are the various insulation components and company-wide recycling efforts.
If you’re like me and have not been exposed to the terminology described above, you too will be fascinated by exploring the workings of these sophisticated systems. The geothermal system is a free renewable energy source powered by the sun. We’re not talking your average run of the mill solar panels. The geothermal system taps into renewable solar energy stored in the ground. Normal air systems take extreme temperatures from outside to create the opposite atmosphere inside in a terribly inefficient conversion. To adjust the temperature of the interior, our geothermal system collects the air from inside and transports to an outside series of underground pipes, called a loop. The heart of the geothermal system, circulates a water-based solution, an environmentally safe anti-freeze, through the closed loop system. Ground temperatures remain relatively constant, staying on average between 38 – 55 degrees fahrenheit. In summer, the system draws hot air from inside, transfers it to the underground loop which radiates the heat away into the cool earth. The now cool air returns back inside through a duct system. In winter, heat is extracted from the ground and through the use of a heat pump, is compressed to a higher temperature.
The earth loop eliminates the need for fossil fuel usage. The geothermal system is recognized by the EPA as the most environmentally friendly, cost effective and energy efficient heating and cooling technology available.
The energy recovery ventilation system exchanges the energy contained in the building and uses it to precondition the incoming outdoor ventilation air. In addition, the system pre-cools and dehumidifies in the summer and humidifies and pre-heats in the winter. Recovery is cost efficient, sustainable and reduces global energy consumption and provides better indoor air quality.
With conventional hot water systems, 30% of the heat is wasted because it is exhausted out of the system via a fan. The hydronic hot water system installed at Jedwards International utilizes a high efficiency condensing boiler which contains two heat exchanges. The first is heated by the gas burner and the second catches excess exhaust gas heat from the primary exchanger increasing efficiency. During the summer months, the system enables the hot water to be heated for free as it uses the heat from the air conditioner. In the winter months, hot water is heated with the condensing boiler.
Some other examples of our green initiative here at Jedwards is our insulation. Our windows are triple pane windows with low E coating filled with the inert gas, krypton, which is a clear, non-toxic odorless gas that significantly decreases heat transfer between the building and outside. In addition, the insulation in the walls is a cellulose insulation which is comprised of recycled Boston Globe newspaper. The final green effort is the recycling program, which is a substantial contribution to keeping trash out of landfills, saving trees, conserving energy and reducing pollutants.
In an effort to meet the second goal of selling products that sustain our resources, Jedwards only sources from producers that partake in sustainable practices. Jedwards International purchases all raw palmingredients from producers who are RSPO (Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil) members and predominantly from South American countries where deforestation is not an issue.
Jedwards International was the proud recipient of the Friend of the Earth Award 2017 for its certified Organic Palm Fruit Oil. The company, which also obtained the Friend of the Sea Certification for its Omega-3 fish oil concentrates in 2012, is a major supplier of organic and conventional specialty oils, essential oils, butter, waxes, and botanicals. Jedwards International and its supplier have full compliance with Social Accountability requirements. Their social and participative production model ensures economic and social benefits for workers.
“We believe a healthy community goes hand in hand with a sustainable world. Jedwards International believes that by offering palm materials that are certified Friends of the Earth, we are providing an option for businesses that are committed to promoting environmental, economic and social impact,” comments Chris Iorio, President of Jedwards International. “For this reason, we are constantly innovating to supply healthier materials with the highest standards in environmental and conservation practices.”