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Verde Kids: Business On A Mission

Walking into Verde Kids, your first impression might be of a cute baby outfit or a fun game, but upon closer inspection you will realize that every item in the store has a story. That story is related to the store’s mission: To offer a wide variety of eco-friendly clothing, toy, and kitchen and bath products for children. Verde Kids is located in the Old Orchard Shopping Center of Webster Groves. They will celebrate their second birthday in October (follow Verde Kids on Facebook to learn about the celebration).

Why open a business with a mission? Owner, Jessica Kester sees the mission of providing eco-friendly products as an extension of her former career as an environmental educator. She says, “Consumers make choices about the health of our environment with every purchase.” At Verde Kids, she pre-selects items so consumers can choose products with the least environmental impact; items are made with organic cotton, sustainably-harvested wood or recycled materials. Jessica also looks for products that are made as close to St. Louis as possible, minimally packaged, and made under fair labor standards.

When getting ready to open Verde Kids, Jessica looked for eco-options for every corner. The space needed a new floor, so Jessica chose highly-renewable bamboo. She furnished the store with clothing racks made from reclaimed barn wood and shelving from local resale shops. The hangers are also made of bamboo and even the gift bags are 100% recycled and recyclable.

What’s next for this green business? As Verde Kids enters its third year in business, Jessica is looking into replacing the fluorescent overhead light bulbs with more energy efficient LED light strips. She also hopes to be able to support environmental and garden programs at local schools – tying back to her passion for educating the next generation.

When asked about starting a mission-based business, Jessica said, “I hope someday there will not be a need for “green” stores because all products will be made in eco-friendly and responsible ways but until then I am proud to offer great options at Verde Kids. I love to hear our customers say things like they didn’t know plastic could be recycled into fleece or felt – they are learning something new when they shop here!”

If your mission is to make responsible consumer choices, then you can start at Verde Kids!

For more information please call 314-962-5437 or visit 27 South Old Orchard Ave. in Webster Groves, 63119.

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