Pet treats maker chooses 'greener' void fill

The folks at Bone Appetit, maker of gourmet pet treats, have revised their thinking about foam peanuts as void fill. They now prefer Sylvacurl, recyclable, biodegradable and reusable wood shavings from Eastview Enterprises (East Hardwick, VT).

Omaha-based Bone Appetit has used Sylvacurl for the past year both as bedding for gift baskets and as void fill in corrugated shippers sent across the nation.

Sylvacurl is made from Aspen, a low-grade "waste" wood taken from pastures, woodlots and logging operations. A sawmill close to the Sylvacurl plant in East Hardwick chops the wood into small blocks. At the plant, the blocks are fed into a shavings machine, dried to lower moisture and content weight, shaken to remove dust and fines, and prepared for shipping.

Mark Simonson, co-owner of Bone Appetit, chose Sylvacurl primarily for environmental reasons. "We had customers that wouldn't buy our product because we used [expanded polystyrene]," he says. "[Customers] definitely like the fact that we are going to something that's a recycled product that's not harmful to the environment." And the company is benefitting just as much as the environment. According to Simonson, the company is saving about 15% over its previous packing materials, both EPS and parchment paper.

Sylvacurl comes to Bone Appetit in 14 cu' cartons. Workers manually prepare the gift baskets and variety packs using Sylvacurl as both basket bedding and corrugated shipper void fill.

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