A new business paradigm enabled by the cradle to cradle philosophy

In order to get your head around a truly sustainable future, it is necessary to think in different terms as laid out by the cradle-to-cradle philosophy. We are facing a future of indisputable and worsening resource scarcity that requires entirely new ways of designing, manufacturing and selling products.

Prof Michael Braungart, founder of Cradle to Cradle points out that it is about focusing on the excellent service and exceptional experience that a company provides and not on the product. A product should have a defined use period and when that period ends, the company takes back the physical part of the product and uses those valuable raw materials and designs them in to a new and better product.

Prof Michael expanded on this by saying that companies will need to see themselves more and more as raw material banks that are experts in resource scarcity management. He stressed that the cradle-to-cradle concept and the deconstruction and re-use approach is fundamentally different to the old ‘recycling’ paradigm which is more or less a token approach to sustainability and is very limited in and of itself.

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