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Earth Fare is donating five cents for every paper or plastic bag that customers don't use during the month of October to the Buncombe County Beekeepers' Western North Carolina Bee School. The money will help sponsor a course in beekeeping that will lead to a comprehensive bee school slated for January 2009.
The organic/natural grocer raised approximately $100,000 through the "Friends of Earth Fare" bag-recycling program in 2007. All funds donated through the program benefit local nonprofits selected by each Earth Fare store. The program also helps conserve nonrenewable resources when plastic or paper bags aren't used. Earth Fare has sponsored the program for 15 years. When customers bring their own bag to shop instead of taking a new one, Earth Fare donates five cents per bag to a selected local nonprofit who is the "Friend" of the month.
"A nickel may not sound like much, but they all add up to a large amount of money," says Troy DeGroff, director of sales and marketing at Earth Fare. "Not to mention that in 2007 alone, our customers saved over 1 million plastic and paper bags from going into circulation."
Asheville, N.C.-based Earth Fare has stores in North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Tennessee.