Sustainable brands. A term soon to join the lexicon of perfect oxymorons, like jumbo shrimp and plastic glasses, but for now the title of a four-day annual conference in Monterey, Calif., referred to by those in the know as "SB08."
The corporate-logo-covered banner at the conference entrance was straight out of NASCAR, as SB08 had garnered sponsorship from the likes of the Gap, Hewlett Packard, Advanced Micro Devices, Clorox, General Electric, Deloitte and Sun Microsystems, as well as smaller companies like Lunar Design, Mohawk Fine Papers, Seventh Generation and Fetzer Vineyards. Conference presenters touched on topics from safer fish to smarter supply chains, consumer attitudes to crowd-sourcing. This breadth of participation is something to applaud; many of these companies wouldn't have seen the merit of attending, let alone sponsoring, a sustainability conference in years past.
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