The Food Journal and Food, Nutrition & Science

An alliance between The Lempert Report and The Center for Food Integrity

Sustainability Series: Glacia Icebox Water

Sustainability Series: Glacia Icebox Water


April 25, 2010

Founded with a mission to provide a unique and environmentally-friendly alternative to a market besieged by competing brands of bottled water, Glacia Icebox uses pressed paper technology to deliver pure arctic spring water from Norway in a recyclable, biodegradable box. We talked to one of Glacia’s founders, Steven Weymer, about the ability to live sustainably without sacrificing quality or convenience.

How does your business define sustainability? 

Simple. Our products and services reduce the consumption of fossil fuels. 5000 of our five liter boxes replaces 25,000 PET bottles, removes 1396 pounds of plastic from the manufacturing process, and saves 472 gallons of oil and 398 kilowatt hours of energy. Purchasing one case of Glacia Icebox Water-in-a-Box saves enough energy to light a room for a day.
How are you incorporating sustainable practices into your business? 

Our product speaks for our commitment to renewable and sustainable resources.
What are your short term and long term goals? 

Our main goal is to replace the plastic bottle as the package for single serve consumables. Pressed-paper cartons are based on the concept of source reduction. They use minimal material and energy to produce and distribute, thus resulting in minimal waste and fuel emissions at the end of the product life cycle. 

Where do you think you’ll have the biggest impact? 

The boxes are completely recyclable, biodegradable and non-toxic and take less energy to produce than plastic bottles. Impact here will be huge.
How do you measure your progress? 

We bring our product all the way from Norway and sometimes people are concerned that the distance traveled negates all of the benefits of using this technology. But the reality is, that even with travel, the small boxes have a carbon footprint that is more than 70% lower than their plastic bottle counterparts, and the five-liter boxes have a carbon footprint that is 82% less.

How do retailers factor into your efforts?

The major advantage for the retailer is their ability to create and maintain a leadership role in the movement to find and utilize sustainable alternatives in consumables.
Why are sustainable business practices important to the food industry? 

Sustainable practices are important to maintain lower prices, and the food industry is a huge consumer of packaging materials.

Why are sustainable business practices important to the consumer?
It is most interesting to observe how the consumer wants to participate in reducing their carbon footprint, but is not sure how to integrate this new green consciousness into their daily routine. Water-in-a-box is an easy and painless way to join the cause.

For better or worse, we have a fully developed bottled water culture in this country, and people will not give up that convenience and portability easily. This is where we offer them a sensible alternative. We have a fantastic product and we have seen it be enthusiastically received in all venues and in all classes of trade. It is something the public is clamoring for: participation in environmental responsibility.

For more information on Glacia Icebox Water contact John Gurich, Market Connections Group, at

In upcoming issues, we will feature interviews with food companies that are making strides in their sustainability efforts. If you are interested in telling us more about what your company is doing to get involved please contact Allison Bloom