As part of the great Midwestern Bread Basket, Iowa helps feed America and the world, but Iowa is more than ranches full of cattle and rows of wheat and corn. Iowa is a vast state criss-crossed and surrounded by waterways, and covered in prairies, hills, and trees. "After traveling to nearly every state in the U.S., I would have to say that Iowa is the most environmentally conscious place here in the states. What makes Iowa, Iowans, and businesses like Hyvee sustainable, is the fact that they live a simple life which we should all aspire to do. This is especially true when creating business models for sustainability; they should be simpler and generate less waste," said Ali Orabi, Co-founder of PATHWATER.
The green landscape of Iowa isn’t the only green wave around
As a frontrunner in the recycle game, Iowa’s “Bottle Bill” helps keep used bottles out of landfills, waterways, and burn barrels by returning a five-cent deposit for every bottle brought back to a center. This initiative is part of a larger statewide recycling program, and one of only 14 in the country. In April 2019, the Iowa Environmental Council put forth initiatives to clean up water in the state and provide subsidies to local farmers, businesses, and individuals to step up their clean energy game.
Companies like PATHWATER and Hy-Vee are listening to Iowans, and they agree that “going green” benefits the whole community. Hy-Vee has always been dedicated to doing what is best for the community, and a large part of that mission includes increased sustainability through suppliers, employee-owners, and infrastructure.
“A Smile in Every Aisle” and beyond
Hy-Vee looks for companies that are working toward new solutions in sustainability. Packaging and sourcing is always an issue when considering a new product. Is there an excessive amount of filler material? Is every product wrapped individually in plastic? Can these materials be recycled? Was it shipped from overseas?
PATHWATER is an affordable, reusable, and 100% recyclable bottled water from a sustainable municipal source. We use a 7-step reverse osmosis filtration process, and the minimal paper and cardboard packaging materials are recyclable and made here in America. PATHWATER, to steer as clear from single-use plastic as possible, uses aluminum bottles and cardboard cases. Both the BPA-free liner and the sturdy polypropylene cap are currently used to extend the life of the bottle so that it can be reused for years. That’s why PATHWATER is a perfect match for Hy-Vee.
Plastic waste is getting a lot of attention these days, and rightfully so -- we are swimming in plastic, so both PATHWATER and Hy-Vee are working toward a better future. One bottle of PATHWATER replaces, on average, more than 156 single-use plastic bottles of water. Hy-Vee and the Iowa Grocery Association instituted the Build with Bags (™) program. Shoppers can bring plastic shopping and dry cleaning bags back to the store to be recycled, and Hy-Vee encourages shoppers to transport groceries in sturdier, less wasteful reusable bags. We know you care about plastic waste, and so do we.
Employees at Hy-Vee care, because they own the place
Literally. Hy-Vee employee-owners are dedicated to not only providing the best in-store experience, but also giving back. Many employee-owners give their time as volunteers to local causes, and, as a corporation, Hy-vee sponsors events like The Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund (JDRF).
In fact, that’s how PATHWATER and Hy-Vee met. The PATHWATER team knows that clean drinking water is a human right, and we give out our reusable bottles as often as possible at events like JDRF’s One Walks to make sure people not only have access to clean water but can take a refillable container with them, so they always have somewhere safe to keep that water.
It was a natural fit for PATHWATER and Hy-Vee to become partners with all of the similarities in sustainability between the two teams. Hy-Vee is working toward LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification from the ground up. From the cement floors that don’t require dangerous heavy cleaning chemicals, to the rooftop solar panels powering the stores, with LED lighting systems, in-store recycling, and reduction of food waste management in between. Hy-Vee is working hard to change standards for the future. They also partner with ChargePoint for all those electric vehicles, and GreenChill to manage refrigeration.
Conclusion: PATHWATER + Hy-Vee= a Partnership in SustainabilityWe’re doing things big with sustainable bottled water, and Iowa is a big part of that. Iowa has one of the very few statewide beverage recycling programs in the country, and we’re excited to work with Hy-Vee’s sustainability efforts to provide an affordable, reusable, and 100% recyclable aluminum bottled water option. When you turn to bottled water, choose the best reusable PATH every time, at Hy-Vee!
Q: What is PATHWATER?
PATHWATER is an affordable, reusable, and 100% recyclable bottled water.
But that’s not all!
We are a team of people who know clean drinking water should be available to everyone. We believe single-use beverage containers are one of the biggest offenders in the plastic pollution crisis. We know it is our duty to reduce waste on this planet, and we try to get out the word that reusability is always preferable to single-use.
Q: Why should I choose PATHWATER over the plastic bottle right next to it?
The fight against single-use plastic is growing, and the price is right! PATHWATER bottles are about the same price as the polluting plastic ones on the next shelf, and PATHWATER bottles can be used over and over— that makes them LESS EXPENSIVE over time.
And we know you care about your community and family. The cost of using single-use plastic goes far beyond dollars. Plastic usually ends up in landfills, waterways, and burn barrels. Iowa’s lakes, rivers, and marine life don’t need more plastic choking them. Even worse, when plastic gets burned it creates toxic fumes and leaches toxic chemicals into the ground beneath. No one wants that, especially not in Iowa where the health of the soil and the crops are so important to the country.
Q: Does PATHWATER add anything to the water?
Nope, not a thing. No electrolytes or acids or bases. It’s just good, clean water from right here in the USA.
Q: Is it safe to drink out of aluminum?
Heck yeah! And because there is a thin layer of polypropylene inside the sturdy aluminum exterior, you won’t get a weird metallic taste. We did extensive testing until we got it right. If you’re really interested in learning more, here’s the backstory on aluminum and safety.
More questions? Email me Ali@drinkpath.com, and I’ll get back to you ASAP.