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{Past Event} - Greening the Supply Chain Series: How To Save a Million Dollars Through Office Supply Reuse!

May 23, 2013 - 2:00 pm - May 23, 2013 - 3:00 pm -- Eastern Standard Time


In order to reach our lofty waste reduction goals, Fairview realized we would need to revamp our mindset and fully embrace the mantra REDUCE, REUSE, and Recycle. To put this practice into motion, we launched "Reuse Stores" at six Fairview facilities in 2011. Instead of purchasing new, these stores reallocate excess and un-used office supplies and furniture across the system. Using our success as a catalyst, we'll discuss how anyone can launch a reuse store and in broader terms, how healthcare can gain control of the excesses beyond the recycling bin. Check out this very funny video about the FSH Reuse Store.


  • The waste hierarchy: According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, source reduction and reuse are the most preferred methods for solid waste reduction. Learn about the benefits from source reduction and reuse include saving natural resources, conserving energy and decreasing costs for your organization. By following the waste hierarchy, you can re-evaluate what happens with your waste and be mindful of the impacts your organization has on the community you serve and the environment.
  • Reuse as a business model:  To launch our Reuse Stores, we met with key stakeholders, from supply chain directors to consumers, to obtain feedback about the most efficient ways to reuse office supplies and furniture. Almost immediately, we witnessed the economic benefits of reuse and the impact we could have across our organization. 
  • How centralizing purchases can save money and improve efficiency: Before the opening of Reuse Stores, individual departments in our hospitals were able to purchase office supplies if they met a $50 purchase minimum. By eliminating individual purchases and centralizing office supply orders, we consolidated purchases to reduce waste, save money. 
  • Reuse beyond our hospital walls: Reuse has helped us identify other areas for improvement when it comes to our “stuff”. When we can no longer reuse an item on site, we look to donate these materials to local non-profit organizations that are better suited to reuse them. By being more mindful with our medical missions and in kind donations, we can help the communities we serve by providing them with the materials they need to better fulfill their mission. 


Crystal Saric, Sustainability Program Manager, Fairview Health Services
Crystal Saric is Sustainability Program Manager at Fairview Health Services in Minneapolis, MN. She manages aggressive system goals to reduce Fairview’s overall environmental footprint by reducing energy, waste, water, toxic chemicals, and increasing green purchasing, healthy and local food systems, and sustainable building concepts. Ms. Saric has a Master’s of Public and Nonprofit Administration, serves on the board of directors for Minnesota Waste Wise, and has spoken at several local and national conferences on healthcare and sustainability. She lives with her husband and 4-year-old daughter in Dayton, Minnesota.

Wesli Waters, Sustainability Coordinator, Fairview Health Services
Wesli Waters is Sustainability Coordinator at Fairview Health Services, and previously served in the AmeriCorps Minnesota GreenCorps program at Fairview for a year prior to her hire. While in AmeriCorps, Wesli opened four successful reuse stores at Fairview sites. She gained valuable knowledge about how items are ordered, used, and disposed of within a healthcare setting. She found many opportunities to trim waste, do better for our communities, and reduce costs. Wesli has a Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Studies.

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