Posted by|12 November 2014
What an honor! Mountain Rose Herbs recently received a beautiful Salmon-Safe plaque for our work around watershed stewardship. Salmon are key indicators of ecosystem health, so what better way to protect water quality and Mother Earth than by protecting our scaly friends?
Salmon-Safe works across the West Coast to transform land management practices so Pacific salmon can thrive. Dan Kent, with Salmon-Safe Inc., joined us at the Long Tom Watershed Council’s 17th Annual Meeting and Celebration to present the award. We were blown away when he told us that they repurposed a traffic sign and transformed it into this work of art! As a Zero Waste company, we approve!
We are committed to water conservation, riparian habitat restoration, elimination of conventional fertilizer use in landscaping, and improving stormwater treatment systems. In this effort, we have started some exciting enhancement projects. In 2015, we will install a rain garden to filter water runoff from impervious surfaces on our property. We will also plant 20+ native trees to provide shade to the parking area, bioswale, and outdoor employee break area. Should be a fun Mountain Rose River Project! Stay tuned for updates…
Learn more about Salmon-Safe and how you can get involved!
Posted by|04 November 2014
Contribute to Cascadia Wildlands before November 30, 2014 and Mountain Rose Herbs will match your donation dollar for dollar up to $5000!
We are extremely proud to support Cascadia Wildlands and the work they do to protect wild salmon, old growth forests, endangered predators, and the natural environment we hold dear. Here at Mountain Rose Herbs, we are committed to conducting business in an ethically and environmentally sound manner. Part of our responsibility to the natural world is supporting organizations like Cascadia Wildlands that tirelessly work to protect predators, which are indicators of a healthy ecosystem.
A keystone is an important piece of a larger whole; the stone in an arch’s crown which holds the other stones in place. Keystone species, like the gray wolf, play the same role in ecological communities. For example, the reintroduction of gray wolves in Yellowstone National Park led to the recovery of the entire ecosystem, from vegetation to beavers to hawks and eagles.
This year marked a historic wolf recovery in Oregon. Over 3 years ago, the famous male wolf, dubbed Journey, traveled from northeast Oregon to northern California in search of love. In May 2014, a remote camera captured a black-colored female and Journey in the same area. Soon after, Journey and Wanda’s pups were seen peaking out of their den. This is the first confirmed wolf pack in Oregon’s Cascades in over 60 years!
Please support Cascadia Wildlands to protect our wild places and wolves!
Donate online today by clicking the link below:
Donate by mail and write “MRH Matching Wolf Gift 2014″ on your check:
Cascadia Wildlands, P.O. Box 10455, Eugene, Oregon 97440
Give by November 30 and Mountain Rose will double your donation!
In the Eugene, Oregon area? Join us for an enchanting evening at Cascadia Wildlands’ 12th Annual Wonderland Auction, Saturday December 6, 2014. For more details click here.
Posted by|29 October 2014
Mountain Rose Herbs is a Business Member of EarthShare Oregon and we have setup a generous employee giving program that connects our staff with like-minded environmental organizations working to protect and defend the places we hold dear. Through this program, Mountain Rose Herbs generates thousands of dollars each year for numerous non-profits in the state of Oregon. Employees also work closely with many of these organizations through the Mountain Rose River Project. Our staff loves to give!
This year, Mountain Rose Herbs raised $4,064 in annual contributions and had 31 employees participate, 12 of which were entirely new to the program!
At the kickoff event for the employee giving campaign, Jan Wilson, Executive Director of EarthShare Oregon, thanked Mountain Rose Herbs employees for their generous support of the work that’s being done to address the environment’s most pressing challenges. From renewable energy to locally-grown organic food supplies, from waste reduction to pedestrian-friendly urban design, protecting and restoring habitats in forests, wetlands, oceans and deserts to protecting our clean air and clean water sources – the impact of the efforts that Mountain Rose Herbs employees fund is directly responsible for enhancing our quality of life here in the Pacific Northwest. By “walking our talk,” we not only cement the community-minded culture here at Mountain Rose Herbs, we, hopefully, inspire other businesses to provide ways for their employees to invest in the community too.
Imagine if every “green” business in Oregon made it possible for its employees to contribute a small amount of their paychecks to the environmental legacy we’re leaving for future generations! Imagine a state where all our kids get a quality education at schools without pesticides on the playgrounds, healthy foods that don’t cause allergic reactions and don’t destroy the soil, water without industrial pollutants, air without the particulates that trigger asthma attacks, and safe routes for kids to get to school by bike and on foot. That’s the vision, and it is well within our reach. But it requires more people to get involved. The employees at your workplace may be the tipping point!
So if your business would like to set up an easy way to establish or enhance your leadership role in creating a healthy and sustainable community, we heartily recommend a fun and rewarding workplace giving campaign. EarthShare has a toolkit and advice that makes it easy, and they work seamlessly with other workplace fundraising organizations, like United Way, or with your existing holiday fundraising events. Employees will appreciate this low-cost employee benefit, as well as your public commitment to the community and the natural world in which they live, work, and raise families.
Contact EarthShare Oregon and get started today!
Contact Jan Wilson with EarthShare Oregon, email@example.com, 503.223.9015
Posted by|20 August 2014
Once upon a time on a hot day in July, a group of dedicated Mountain Rose Herbs volunteers struck out to help one of our non-profit partners. With water in our canteens and homemade organic sun screen in tow, we followed the river path to our worksite – the herbicide-free butterfly meadow.
Over 24 species of butterflies once called this former upland prairie and oak savanna home. Due to loss of habitat, only 7 remain. The Whilamut Natural Area is located in an urban park and is particularly special to both us and the Walama Restoration Project (WRP), who is working to provide a corridor for rare butterfly species with their seed collection and nursery program.
Walama Restoration Project is a non-profit organization dedicated to environmental stewardship and biological diversity through education and habitat restoration. They are committed to the rehabilitation of threatened or degraded areas in our community. One of the first steps is to remove invasive plants and make room for the natives. WRP’s preferred method to remove invasive plants is to do it chemical-free and we agree!
Conventional weed control involves spraying harmful, toxic herbicides. With care and conscience, WRP removes unwanted plants by hand and utilizes shade cloth, thermal treatment and an organic foam treatment. That day, our group of volunteers helped to maintain the shade cloths already in place. We also removed invasive plants by hand that were creeping out at the seams and border of the plot.
The belief that we can and need to do better without pesticides brought us to this meadow. And WRP has real success stories. In 2004, the Great Copper butterfly (Lycaena xanthoides), a species absent since the 1970s, reappeared in the West Eugene Wetlands across from the Mountain Rose Herbs campus!
After a long day in exhausting 90 degree heat, we packed up our shovels, loppers, mattocks, and wheel barrel. It was time to call it a day. Along with organizing Mountain Rose River Projects like these, we help to educate and build awareness about natural alternatives to pesticides.
Take a stand by pledging not to use herbicides and post a Pesticide-Free Area sign in your garden or on your lawn.
The end…or only the beginning?
Posted by|16 July 2014
Last November, Mountain Rose Herbs was recognized as the first Eugene business to become Salmon Safe certified! Along with businesses, Salmon Safe helps farms, vineyards, campuses, developers, and parks transform land management practices to protect Pacific salmon. The team of experts evaluated our current practices and praised us for being on the right track. They also gave recommendations for how to improve, and we’re taking their advice!
In the spring, we reached out to the Long Tom Watershed Council, a local non-profit devoted to improving water quality in our watershed. On a hot day in July, it felt like 97 degrees in the sun, but that didn’t stop us from walking the parameter of our campus, slogging through the bio-swale, and taking plant and sediment samples. Sarah Whitney, Interim Project Manager for LTWC, educated us about best practices and overall goals of storm water management.
“Managing stormwater as close to the source as possible helps to mimic pre-construction (if not natural) conditions of the site, allowing the water to be slowed, cooled, and cleaned before entering the ground water or streams. On a typical site, stormwater flows over parking lots, roofs and garbage areas, picking up pollutants before entering a stormdrain which pipes the water directly to streams bringing pollution and scouring the banks.”
Our campus is sandwiched between sensitive wetlands and the Amazon canal which flow into the Long Tom River, a tributary of the Willamette River, one of the most important waterways in Oregon. That is one reason we feel so strongly that it is our responsibility to care for on-site water runoff and refuse to landscape with pesticides.
Sarah continues, “To mitigate these impacts you must create an area for stormwater from these hardscape areas to flow through vegetation and soil before entering a storm drain. These areas can often be sized so that no water overflows from the site in a typical rain event, instead allowing the water to be up taken by plants and to flow down, recharging the aquifer. The best plants for these areas are wetland plants, so additional pockets of habitats are created that provide food and shelter for pollinators, birds, and other wildlife.”
Sarah and the team also helped us assess and prioritize projects. Potential projects include: planting native Bigleaf Maples to provide shade and habitat, installing a rain garden to manage parking lot runoff, cleaning out our bio-swale and retention pond, and building a green roof above our recycling area. Exciting things to come!
Learn more about our commitment to sustainability!
Photo credit: Ephraim Payne, Long Tom Watershed Council
Posted by|02 July 2014
Our very own Shawn Donnille, Vice President and co-owner of Mountain Rose Herbs, was recently honored by one of our beloved non-profit partners for his leadership and service! Shawn, former President of Beyond Toxics’ Board of Directors, was completely surprised when they presented him with the Visionary Leadership award at the Bee-Fest Celebration!
In true form, Beyond Toxics threw a fabulous party filled with live music, sweet treats, face painting, and of course chilled Hibiscus High Tea. Eugene, Oregon is gaining recognition as the most bee-friendly city in the U.S. for our work protecting pollinators and specifically for passing a resolution to ban neonicotinoids pesticide application on city property. We are proud to live and work in a city leading the way to fight colony collapse and protect our food system.
Mountain Rose is a long-time supporter of Beyond Toxics. We support their mission through charitable giving, disseminating literature, in-kind donations, and employee volunteer projects. Annually, we remove invasive plants by hand to maintain a no-spray corridor along a scenic roadway in Oregon. Read about our Fall Weed Pull project last year: http://mountainroseblog.com/pullingfallweeds/
“Beyond Toxics represents the finest culmination of hard-working individuals that produce the results we can all live by. Our industry, livelihoods, and communities are dependent upon a healthy landscape, and our prospects would be very bleak indeed if we did not have the steadfast commitment of Beyond Toxics.” - Shawn Donnille
Get Involved with Beyond Toxics!
Learn about other Organizations We Support!
Posted by|14 May 2014
Drum roll please… introducing Mountain Rose Herbs’ new employee-led Green Team!
Our Green Team is committed to environmentally and socially conscious operating practices by informing and motivating co-workers about waste reduction, energy and water conservation, alternative transportation options, workplace giving, and volunteer opportunities. This fantastic group works with the Director of Sustainability and serves as a resource to co-workers. Each member brings something unique to the table. We look forward to sharing ideas at our monthly meetings and continuing to improve our sustainability initiatives for everyone here at Mountain Rose!
Learn more about our sustainability efforts here!
Posted by|23 April 2014
Here at Mountain Rose Herbs, we are passionately committed to protecting both the herbs we use and provide to our customers, and the beautiful wild medicinals found in our forests. But how do we go about this tricky task as individuals and as a community? Educating ourselves about which plant communities (and their eco-systems) are considered sensitive, at-risk, threatened, or endangered is a good first step. Understanding the realities of poaching and the harm caused is another. Only taking what we need from the plant world, finding alternatives that are bountiful or weedy (hello, Dandelion!), and spreading the word to our friends and family about sustainability are all crucial steps.
We can all have “good practices” in mind when selectively harvesting wild herbs, but on a broader scale we need research. Since our inception in 1987, we have relied on organizations like United Plant Savers to help us make informed decisions and help educate our fellow herbalists about what not to pick, what to pick, when to pick it, and how much is sustainable. We work closely with our vendors and wild harvesters in this effort.
This year, we adopted Trillium through United Plant Savers’ At-Risk Healing Herb Program. This is a five year commitment to sponsor one of twenty medicinal herbs found in North America. Trillium is a beauty that greets us in Oregon each spring, and with its history of once being widely sold on the herb market, we wanted to spotlight the risks to our natural splendor and celebrate the efforts to conserve it.
Can you imagine our forests without them?
“United Plant Saver’s role as the recognized voice for our native medicinal plants has never been more important and necessary. By adopting one of the plants that UpS has identified as ‘at-risk’, you are significantly supporting our mission to protect native medicinal plants of the United States and Canada and their native habitat while ensuring an abundant renewable supply of medicinal plants for generations to come.” – Sara Katz, Board President
A copy of our adoption certificate is displayed at United Plant Savers’ Goldenseal Botanical Sanctuary in Rutland, Ohio as well as our meeting room in our main facility in Eugene, Oregon.
It’s more than just talk. We are dedicated to the sustainability of North America’s medicinal botanicals. You can be too! Please visit United Plant Savers website and adopt an ‘at-risk’ herb today! Find out how to adopt an ‘at-risk’ herb and the benefits of doing so. More information can be found in the brochure here.
United Plant Savers continues to be a resource and inspiration for us!
Posted by|01 April 2014
It is our great pleasure to announce our April Matching Gift Challenge benefiting our dear friends at the McKenzie River Trust! We will match your donation dollar for dollar up to $5000 from April 1st through the 30th. Make your donation go twice as far to protect the special places of Western Oregon!
“Whether you want to admit it or not, wild fish, free flowing rivers, and pristine waters chock full of invertebrates is what defines the character of that curious specimen called the Oregonian. Our cultural heritage would be amiss without the rapture and delight that pure rivers provide and thankfully we have organizations like the McKenzie River Trust to protect this cultural heritage born of water, rock, and fish.” -Shawn Donnille, Co-owner and Vice President of Mountain Rose Herbs
Online: To give your tax deductible donation now, please click here!
Mail: Send a check to the McKenzie River Trust at the address below:
McKenzie River Trust
1245 Pearl Street
Eugene, OR 97401
Donate during the April Matching Gift Challenge and you will become a founding member in support of the Trust. If you donate $100 or more, you’ll receive their new ceramic mug as a “thank you” gift!
Local to Eugene?
Join us at the McKenzie Memories fundraiser, Friday, April 4th from 6 – 8:30pm at Cozmic (199 W. 8th Ave. Eugene, OR) where we will kick off the matching gift challenge.
Posted by|21 January 2014
Mountain Rose Herbs is leading the way to reduce CO2 emissions and flip the switch on global climate change. Our Carpool, Bus, and Bike program was put into place in June 2007 and has been extremely popular among the staff.
Who wouldn’t love a cash incentive to ride their bike to work?
We pay employees who drive a carpool or take the bus to work 12 cents per mile. For those who commute by bike, we compensate them 20 cents per mile. At the end of the year, we offer $750 in bonuses to the individuals who log the most miles. Talk about positive reinforcement! Our main facility is located on a well maintained bike path, making it a lovely ride to and from work. In addition, we provide a covered and locked bike area so employees have a safe spot to stash their ride. Not to mention the health benefits!
In May 2013, we participated in the Business Commute Challenge and 22% of our staff joined in! The week was filled with fun events and raffle drawings. Troy, our Master Recycler on staff, even won the coveted Burley bike trailer! It is much deserved seeing as he’s been riding to work every day for the past 2 years!
We recently got the exciting news that Mountain Rose Herbs has been recognized with a Bronze Bicycle Friendly Business award from the League of American Bicyclists!
“Businesses like Mountain Rose Herbs are leading the way to a healthier and more sustainable future,” said Andy Clarke, President of the League of American Bicyclists. “While helping boost the economy in their communities, Bicycle Friendly Businesses are also investing in a happier and more productive workforce.”
Learn more about our sustainability initiatives and guiding principles!
Posted by|07 January 2014
What an exciting time for us here at Mountain Rose Herbs! We are the first Eugene area business to be awarded Salmon-Safe certification!
“Salmon and water health are the cornerstones of environmental well-being here in the Pacific Northwest. Any conservation efforts must include rigorous changes in how we live and work at every level.” – Shawn Donnille, Co-owner and Vice-president
Salmon species in the Northwest are not only significant ecologically but culturally and spiritually. They face many challenges due to habitat degradation, over-harvesting, and climate change. We feel it is our responsibility to protect them. Salmon-Safe is a non-profit that works with other conservation organizations to improve land management practices and ensure a future for our scaly friends. They have certified more than 60,000 acres of farm and urban lands in Oregon, Washington, California, and British Columbia.
Since we relocated to our current facility in 2010, we have dreamed of applying to Salmon-Safe. In July 2013, we took the first step. A team of expert scientists conducted a site assessment and looked at our overall wastewater management practices, water quality, and neighboring riparian corridors.
To gain this third party certification, we underwent a thorough assessment and evaluation. The good news is that we’re on the right track. We conserve water with a satellite controlled irrigation system, maintain a pesticide-free facility, and utilize a bio-swale which naturally filters roof and pavement runoff. And now we have the tools to do even more!
At the end of the day, it’s about being accountable. With the help of Salmon-Safe, we are working to achieve this kind of transparency by gathering the facts, analyzing them, and improving our policies and procedures. Mountain Rose Herbs has taken a firm stance on protecting aquatic life in urban ecosystems and we hope that other businesses, farms, and campuses will join us. Read more about our Sustainability Projects on the website!
Posted by|23 December 2013
It’s our great pleasure to share the 2012 Mountain Rose Herbs Sustainability Report!
This is an important tool that will help us measure and monitor our greenhouse gas emissions, water usage, employee programs, charitable giving, and many other key indicators. Throughout 2013, I worked closely with every department at Mountain Rose Herbs to gather information for our first annual report.
The project wouldn’t be possible without the assistance of an inspiring team of Graduate students from the University of Oregon’s Lundquist College of Business including Peter Kaupert, Tzvetan Gatchev, Pam Birkel, Alex Velasco, and Grace Chang. In June, we completed data collection and analysis, and now at long last, we are ready to debut our findings in a beautifully crafted 24 page document…
We invite you to sit back with a cup of your favorite Mountain Rose Herbs’ tea and enjoy the read!