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Request a Catalog

Everything we offer is available on the website. We do not offer a paper catalog.  We do understand this is a change in the old way seed companies have operated in the past.

One of the biggest reasons we don't produce a paper catalog is current seed availability.  A live/real-time website allows us to keep availability on our rare seed current. No substitutions, no refund check in your order instead of the seed you wanted.   You actually get what you order.  Plus, we don't have to hire a person to issue daily refunds.  This savings allows us to better serve you in other ways. 

The website also allows us to build a huge database of information for our customers with many photos. No other seed company for instance offers historical references and documents on the origins of heirloom seeds. We could not do this in a paper catalog.

More importantlytly, we are committed to being a sustainable green company. This means reducing our carbon footprint. Yearly many seed companies kill as many as 2,200 trees or more to print their paper catalog. We are committed to greening the planet. These choices saves thousands of trees and the precious ecosystems they support.

We are aware that a few people still have slow internet connections. We have tried to design the site to load quickly. If you have a slow connection at home, remember there are community computers at local libraries and most internet cafes.

We are on the cutting edge of a society that is only now learning to change how it uses its limited resources. Sustainability is more than a name to us. At Sustainable Seed Co. we are proud to be a leader in this new movement.

It is our hope that this doesn't greatly inconvenience you and that you will still choose to do business with us.


The Facts About Catalogs

Catalog retailers send out 20 billion catalogs a year, and almost none of the paper contains any recycled content. Instead, over 8 million tons of trees a year go into catalogs alone—which means 8 million tons of trees are going from forests to the landfill, with a short appearance as junk mail in between. What does that mean?

1 ton of virgin printing paper for catalogs uses 24 trees. Now take the number above of 8 million tons used a year and you get 192,000,000 trees that are killed every year so you can thumb through a catalog!! That is roughly 640,000 acres of trees and forest ecosystems destroyed for JUST catalogs. How in good conscious could you or anyone participate in this behavior?

To put that into perspective, that is almost the entire state of Rhode Island being cut down every year for catalogs. These are not just trees, but entire ecosystems of living beings that are destroyed for catalogs. Our mission is to green the planet, not de-green it. We will not be a part of this irresponsible behavior. Yes, we might lose some customers to this policy, but someone has to take the first step in making a change. We are NOT driven by the dollar but by our consciousness and the knowledge that human beings can do better in the world.

Our company vows to leave the smallest footprint possible on this planet as possible. In fact we hope to green more than we take. We are after all a seed company!

In fact most of the book publishers we buy from are a part of the Green Press Initiative. The goal of the Green Press Initiative is to help those in the book and newspaper industries better understand their impacts on endangered forests, indigenous communities, and the Earth's climate. GPI also works with those in the industry to implement solutions, and to provide the tools and resources necessary to support industry transformation.

Comments on Request a Catalog

Lynn 06-12-2012 02:00 PM
What about offering a down-loadable catalog in PDF format? It would be nice to browse at my time choosing without having to go on-line.
Kathleen Garcia 06-04-2012 05:22 AM
I love your product and I what you stand for. While I too enjoy pouring over seed catalogs, change has to start somewhere and so I vow to start by changing my mind about how I shop. Not to much to ask of a customer when you as a company are willing to commit to so much.Thanks, Kathleen
ROBYN 05-29-2012 01:05 PM
i agree with and share some of the thoughts above. Thousands of printed catalogs are lost through US Postal Service Yearly, Tossed out by previous customers no longer interested, and sadly orders via hard copy catalogs just are not what they used to be. Having been in publishing the past 30 years both in weekly and monthly publications, newsprint & glossy I must say that with all the expansion of websites, Internet marketing and so forth " people" old, middle age & young all have different preferences. However, every year more and more magazines are being published, newspapers, store circulars, store catalogs , drug circulars ex ample: trader joes etc etc. ALL PEOPLE still like to touch, hold and see. That is why stores that are successful expand those same stores offer websites catalogs. Problem here is seed companies work on a small budget in order to make substantial profit. So I sop pose it depends on the company.
Jon 04-27-2012 09:05 AM
While I appreciate your commitment to going green and being sustainable, do you realize how many people are just going to take your on-line catalog and print it out anyways? Also, how about all the people who will just choose to go with another company instead of ordering from you, and recieve a paper printed catalog from them. I'm not speaking for myself here. I can deal with the inconvenience of having to do everything online and I appreciate what you guys are doing and want to support it, but most people won't. And what about people who don't even have a computer? You will loose there business as well in favor of another less green, less sustainable company.

As mentioned by a few others, I feel you should come up with a 100% recycled material to use as paper with a biodegradable ink. Also you could have the online catalog also (I also agree that it would be nice if it had a table of contents w/ quick links), for those who share your feelings and would like to support your movement. I feel all others will either just print the catalog out anyways (on non recycled paper likely, with non-biodegradeable ink), or just go elsewhere.

Thank You,

Betsy 02-27-2012 04:46 PM
While I appreciate your commitment to green, some of my husbands fondest memories of his childhood was in the spring when he and his dad would go through the catalog circling the things they were going to plant that year. This year my husband is curling up in the arm chair with our three year old going through the seed catalogs for the first time. It just doesn't create the same connection to sit infront of an electronic device clicking on the things you choose. I would love to be able to have a better catalog than Gurneys to offer them. Perhaps you could offer a 100% recycled material catalog to help make sure all those other catalogs don't just end up in the landfill.

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