They created their own organic garden using organic waste
Ricoh Distribution Center (RDC), a distribution base in Uruguay, acquired ISO 14001 certification in November 2002; one of the first companies to do so in this area. Since then, RDC has led several environmental conservation projects in the local community.
As a leader in environmental conservation, one of the issues RDC was faced with was disposing of organic waste generated from employee meals. In September 2003, however, RDC employees created a vegetable garden using organic waste. This was a new venture for them. They had no knowledge of organic gardening, but they conducted research, read books, and obtained advice from experts on how to make compost and grow vegetables using organic waste. As a result, the amount of organic waste, 20 kg a month, was reduced to zero.
Contributing to local communities through organic farming
RDC has contributed to local communities by donating produce to neighboring elementary schools since 2005. The donated vegetables are used to prepare free school lunches for many impoverished children. In 2006, they donated 200 kg of squash, 420 kg of onions, and 100 kg of cabbage. In addition to this, employees and children have collaborated in writing books with such themes as saving energy and water and disposing of waste to enhance the environmental consciousness of local communities. These books were then donated to the elementary schools.
In addition, RDC offers opportunities for handicapped children to experience farm work and be part of community efforts to help others. Through the local press, RDC has invited other companies to join in these social contribution activities. As a result, neighboring companies have started to participate in programs to support local communities.