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Local Firms Praised for Reducing Toxins

Tim Cunniff of Little Leaf Farms with UMass Lowell Provost Michael Vayda, Asst. Prof. Boce Zhang and Vice Chancellor of Research Julie Chen in at State House
From left are Tim Cunniff of Little Leaf Farms, with UMass Lowell Provost Michael Vayda, assistant professor Boce Zhang and Vice Chancellor of Research Julie Chen.

Sentinel & Enterprise

BOSTON -- State legislators joined the Toxics Use Reduction Act program recently to recognize 2018 Champions of Toxics Use Reduction at the Statehouse. The annual event recognizes outstanding leaders who are making the state a safer place to live and work.

US Pack, Inc., of Leominster, was named an Industry Champion.

US Pack, a leading contract manufacturer of custom liquid specialty products, invested in capital equipment that makes cleanup more efficient and that produces more precise production batches. The solution, a pressure gravity filler, reduces the use of acetone, ethylene glycol and methanol used in manufacturing automotive, industrial and household cleaning products.

Little Leaf Farms of Devens was named a Small Business Champion.

Little Leaf Farms opted to purchase a high-pressure washer to remove algae from the gutters where the lettuce grows rather than using harsh chemicals. The company worked with assistant professor Boce Zhang at UMass Lowell to verify that the gutters were clean and to evaluate the effectiveness of various temperature settings of the washer. 

The Massachusetts Toxics Use Reduction Act of 1989 is designed to protect public health and the environment while enhancing the competitiveness of Massachusetts businesses. Under TURA, companies that use large amounts of toxic chemicals are required to report chemical use and conduct toxics-use reduction planning every two years.

Companies benefit from the joint efforts of three agencies -- the Toxics Use Reduction Institute, the Office of Technical Assistance and Technology and Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection -- that provide training, grant funding, free confidential technical assistance, research and regulatory guidance. For more information, visit