33 Eco-Friendly Business Ideas For Sustainable Minded Entrepreneurs
Updated: Jul 19
There's no doubt that the world is moving towards more sustainable practices. Consumers are looking for eco-friendly options and businesses that align with their values. If you're a startup looking for eco-friendly business ideas, you're in luck! There are plenty of opportunities to get started in the green economy. Here are some ideas to get you started.
What Is An Eco-Friendly Business?
A sustainable, eco-friendly business practices environmental responsibility in everything it does as much as possible. From the products it produces and sells to the way it operates and communicates with customers, an eco-friendly business takes steps to minimize its impact on the environment. Making your business eco-friendly can help protect our planet and improve your bottom line.
Related Article: 8 Reasons Why Big Brands Are Moving Towards Sustainable Products
1. Sustainable Garden Tools Retailing
Starting a sustainable garden tools business can be a great way to make a positive environmental impact while also generating income.
Another benefits of starting a sustainable garden tools business is that there are many different types of garden tools that can be sold. This means that you can target a variety of markets, depending on the type of garden tools you choose to sell. For example, if you sell gardening gloves, you could target the general consumer market, or you could target the horticulture market.
One major things to consider when starting this business is sourcing manufacturers for your brand. We recommend Gairdin as they are a solely focused gardening tool manufacturer that specialises in environmentally friendly custom designs made from recycled and sustainable raw materials like Ocean-Bound Plastics and Algae-Blended Resin.
For more information, check out our article on best gardening tool suppliers to kickstart your brand
2. Environmental Impact and Carbon Emissions Classes
The amount of carbon emissions daily activities produce is staggering and people are unaware that these small decisions have an impact on our environment. You can teach classes about how to reduce the environmental impact of personal transportation, over-using air conditioning, and using better insulation.
3. Eco-Friendly Cleaning
People are tired of dealing with the pollution that comes from conventional cleaning products. Starting an eco-friendly cleaning business with non-toxic items limits your environmental footprint while also providing you more peace of mind since fewer harmful chemicals are getting into homes and onto people's hands when they work around it.
4. Solar Panel Installation
Why not start your own solar panel installation business? The industry is booming, and the demand for qualified technicians with expertise in this field will only increase with soaring energy costs. The benefits don't stop after installation either; as long as these systems operate efficiently (and most do), then any excess energy generated can be sold back into the grid.
5. Green Franchises
Environmentally friendly businesses are all the rage these days, and you might think that they're only available to those with a big wallet. But luckily there are multiple eco-friendly franchises with a solid brand and customer base already in place. Investing into "green" franchise might be your answer to owning your own business.
6. Green Eco-Consulting
Businesses around the world are being pressured to reduce their carbon footprint and energy costs. The pressure for businesses is only going up, so they must find ways on how to make sustainable practices a part of everyday business operations or risk losing customers in this rapidly changing environment. Certified eco-consultants have the skills and expertise to know what steps are needed towards sustainability all while maintaining high ethical standards.
7. Sustainable Event Planning
Eco-friendly event planners find ways of reducing waste and recycling at events by using environmentally friendly materials, venues that don't harm the environment, alternatives for electricity to even making sure all waste food is composted. A green meeting planner will always put their expertise into finding out every green option.
8. Eco-friendly Beauty Salon
With the rise of organic and vegan beauty products, it's a great time to open your own eco-friendly salon. You can choose from hair shampoos & conditioners or nail polish that doesn't harm animals for people who care about their environment as well as deserve some nice skin!
9. Green Finance
The goal of green finance is to support beneficial projects that provide value for both the local community and ecology. The focus on social profitability makes this type different from traditional banks, which are preoccupied with monetary profits at any cost. This can be done in two ways: financially, by providing funding or otherwise getting involved with investment opportunities. Socially profitability should be dictated by how much good it will bring about.
10. Ink Refill Business
The ink-refill business can be an environmentally conscious decision with profits to match. By reusing old cartridges, you are reducing non-biodegradable waste that is accumulating in landfills. A great idea would be starting up a small home-based refilling service where customers send or bring their empty containers while being offered friendly customer support.
11. Organic Food Products
Create your organic food products and start a business. The demand for all-natural alternatives to traditional foods has never been higher. You can make any dish more healthy by using only all-natural and organically grown ingredients. You'll need to be able to set up a stall at farmer's markets and local grocery stores if you want your business idea taken seriously.
12. Herb Farm
The great thing about starting a herb farm is that you can provide people with a much-needed product. Unlike vegetables and fruits, most herbs don't need very many hours of maintenance for them to grow successfully. To make your startup idea stand out from the rest, you can offer customers a chance to pick their own fresh herbs or have them delivered right at home.
13. Community Garden
City folks want to grow their own vegetables and have a sense of community. All you need is some shared land, raised beds for your garden, and seeds or plants that will thrive in the local climate and soil conditions. You could also offer services like gardening lessons, the hire of tools, and selling growing supplies.
14. Eco-Friendly Bed-and-Breakfast
This idea is perfect for entrepreneurs with experience in the hospitality industry, as it simply requires you to make a few changes to your power source and sourcing practices. With organic or locally grown ingredients and sustainable furniture, you can create a green getaway that's perfect for guests of all ages.
15. Sustainable Clothing Line
If you're thinking about starting a clothing line, consider making it a sustainable one. Research clothing materials are environmentally friendly, long-lasting and ethically made out of sustainable materials and will help reduce the amount of waste produced by the fashion industry. Ethically made clothing means that the workers who made your clothes were treated fairly and paid a livable wage. With a sustainable, ethical clothing line, you can help make a difference in the world!
16. Carbon Offsetting Consultancy
Offsetting a company’s carbon emissions can be a great way to make up its carbon footprint and environmental impact. Fees paid for carbon credits go towards renewable energy plans and methods or ways to capture harmful greenhouse gasses. There are several programs and initiatives out there where companies need expert advice and guidance to navigate and understand.
17. Greenhouse or Specialist Farm
Starting a greenhouse or specialist farm business can be a great way to get into the agriculture industry. Specialist farms include mushroom and herb farming, hydroponic farming and even insect farms. The best greenhouse and farm owners understand the intricacies of growing plants, flowers, produce, and just about everything else that comes out of the ground. If you're looking to start your own greenhouse or farming business, make sure you do your research and understand what it takes to be successful in this industry.
18. Sustainable Packaging Design
It's a growing industry, with companies looking at ways of using sustainable packaging to enhance their green image, and ideally reduce costs with lighter weight and less materials. Product packaging need attractive designs and also strong physical protection for transportation, tamper-proof shelf display etc. A successful package design business owner will have a good understanding of materials, packaging assembly and aspects of marketing.
19. Medical Marijuana Dispensary
This business is ideal for entrepreneurs who are passionate about alternative medicine and have a strong desire to help others. Those with experience in the medical field will be especially well-suited for this business. Medical marijuana dispensaries legally purchase marijuana from vendors and sell it to appropriate customers. Staff need to be continually educated about the many different strains and forms of cannabis and any medicinal purposes.
20. Organic Catering Business
There is an increasing demand for organic and locally sourced foods, which provides a great opportunity for environmentally friendly entrepreneurs. The demand in this market is expected to continually grow, so there is a lot of potential in this industry. There are different kinds of consumer requirements: vegan, vegetarian, or Paleo, as well as gluten-free and/or with free-range meat. You can start by catering to local events and then expanding to larger venues.
Beekeeping can be a very rewarding experience for environmentally friendly entrepreneurs. By learning how to keep bees, you will have 24/7 access to delicious raw honey and honeycomb. Furthermore, you can make all-natural cosmetics with wax and honey. This can help set your business apart from the competition and create a unique selling proposition. Beekeeping is a great way to promote environmental consciousness and support sustainable agriculture.
22. Sustainable Travel Agency
Air travel is causing the fastest and highest growth of CO2 emissions, so it is important to focus on eco-friendly ways to travel. Additionally, traditional travel has high environmental costs, from pollution caused by car rentals to fuel used by jets. By helping people book trips to eco-friendly hotels and destinations, you can help them travel responsibly and leave a smaller impact on the local destination, its people and nature.
23. Start a Composting Business
Starting a composting business can be a great way to do meaningful work while helping the environment. Food scraps, leaves, and wood chips can be excellent plant nutrient sources and soil amendments. By starting a composting business, you can help reduce the amount of food waste that is generated each year. You can also get involved in your community and provide a valuable service.
24. Become a Green Blogger
If you're looking for a way to share your knowledge of being eco-friendly with the world, starting a blog is a great option. Not only will you be able to reach and teach many people, but you can also monetize your blog by displaying ads or earning affiliate income. Additionally, you can support and recommend environmentally-friendly products and services to your readers.
25. Sustainable Interior Designer
If you are an entrepreneur who is interested in helping people make environmentally friendly choices, then specializing in green interior design may be the perfect career for you. Interior designers can recommend sustainable fabrics, energy-efficient appliances, and sustainably made furniture to improve the indoor environment and even reduce clients’ electricity bills.
26. Eco-Friendly Products for Pets
Making eco-friendly products for pets can be a great opportunity for environmentally conscious entrepreneurs. By creating products like bamboo squeakers and tug toys, all-natural treats, and upcycled dog beds, entrepreneurs can help reduce waste and make a positive impact on the environment. This is a growing market, with consumers spending over $103 billion on their pets in 2020. So if you’re looking to go green, consider making eco-friendly pet products.
27. Energy Efficient Lighting Sales
If you're looking to start a business that helps the environment, then selling energy-efficient lighting is a great option. LED lights, CFLs and other energy-efficient lighting options are becoming more and more popular, as people become more aware of the benefits of efficient lighting systems. By becoming an expert in this area, you can advise consumers and businesses on the best options for them and help them save money on their purchases and energy bills.
28. Eco-friendly Green Pest Control
Starting a green pest control business can be very profitable. More and more people are looking for ways to get rid of pests in their homes without using harsh chemicals or in a terrible manner. Eco-friendly alternatives, such as diatomaceous earth and neem oil, are becoming increasingly popular. In fact, a recent survey found that half of the respondents would choose a green pesticide over a traditional one. As an environmentally friendly entrepreneur, you can capitalize on this trend by providing safe, effective pest control services.
29. Open an Environmentally Friendly Car Wash
If you're looking to open an environmentally friendly car wash, make sure your facility uses non-chemical products, reduces plastic use, and employs renewable energy where possible eg. solar energy. Not only will this provide a sustainable service to your customers, but they will also feel they can have a positive impact on the environment while enjoying a clean car.
30. Electric Car Charging Stations
If you're an environmentally friendly entrepreneur, there's a new opportunity for you to capitalize on. Electric car charging stations are becoming increasingly popular, and as the number of electric cars on the road grows, so too does the need for places to charge them. Use your charging station as a way to bring in customers and then up-sell them something else. For example organic snacks and meals, wi-fi, eco-friendly car wash etc.
31. Air Ducts And HVAC Cleaning
Consider starting a business that specializes in cleaning air ducts and HVAC systems. Dust and dirt can build up in these systems and prevent them from working properly and efficiently, which leads to large consumption of electricity and, of course, big expensive bills. By regularly cleaning air ducts and HVAC systems, you can help improve indoor air quality and reduce energy consumption.
32. Minimalism Lifestyle Coach
As an eco-friendly person, you could provide professional services as an organizer and shopping consultant to help your clients live a minimalist lifestyle and support our planet. Every person that you coach to purchase less helps reduce waste. Not only will this be good for the environment, but it will also help your clients save money. By teaching people how to use and buy less, you can help them live more sustainable lives while reducing the amount of waste produced each year.
33. Eco-Friendly Apps
Designing apps that help people to become more environmentally friendly can have a big impact. Some examples of such apps help people monitor and reduce their water usage, find and buy sustainable products, locate recycling centers and purchase used goods instead of new items. So if you're looking to go green in a high-tech way, developing an eco-friendly app is the way!
So, if you're looking to start a business with a conscience, one that will help preserve the planet and its resources for future generations, take a look at our list of eco-friendly business ideas. Many of these businesses can be started on a shoestring budget and all of them have the potential to make a real difference in the world. If you're looking for an ethical way to start your own business or want to switch gears and go green, these are the perfect options for you. Making the right choice has never been easier.
Here are some sustainable manufacturing case studies for your inspiration