On January 4, 2018 the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recognized the prevention and diversion accomplishments of Earth Friendly Products, based in Cypress, Calif., one of 16 WasteWise national award winners. The award recipients collectively prevented and recycled over 355,801 tons of waste, saving $17.7 million in avoided landfill fees.
Earth Friendly Products operates four sustainable manufacturing facilities across the United States. The company was established by Van Vlahakis a Greek immigrant from Chania. Van Vlahakis was an ecology-minded entrepreneur who manufactured and marketed environmentally safe cleaning products. After his unexpected death his daughter Kelly Vlahakis-Hanks, became the CEO and President of Earth Friendly Products. Before becoming CEO, Vlahakis-Hanks directed the company’s public relations efforts and served as executive vice president.
The company since 1967 has implemented rigorous recycling programs at all of its divisions to dramatically reduce its production and packaging waste. By separating all recyclable materials, being vigilant in reducing consumption, and working closely with suppliers and vendors to prevent waste, Earth Friendly Products has reduced its overall waste by 95 percent since 2010. Since 2011, the company has earned over $223,000 from selling recyclable materials and has reduced its trash disposal costs by over $115,000.
For 23 years, EPA’s WasteWise has helped organizations and businesses apply sustainable materials management practices to prevent and reduce municipal and select industrial wastes, saving them resources and money.