Carrotmob ‘green buycott’ at Ian’s Pizza increases business

Friday, November 12, 2010

From an article by Tessa Hahn in The Daily Herald:

What did carrots, a solar powered water heater and lots of Ian's pizza have in common Thursday night? The mission student group Carrotmob has to make Madison "green."

Carrotmob, which aims to raise awareness about environmental issues, teamed up with Ian's Pizza on State Street on their latest quest to help local businesses go green. The objective for the event was to raise money so Ian's could buy a solar-powered water heater.

The group held a "buycott," instead of a "boycott," in which the group promoted business for Ian's by attracting students to the restaurant, hosting a disc jockey, dancing and a carrot mascot.

"Right now we're running an electric [water heater], which is really inefficient," Ian's manager Jack Thurnblad said. "The electricity we'd be replacing with it can power a normal family home for seven months."

With 50 percent the proceeds from every slice going toward the fund for the solar-powered water heater, Hayley Blum and Claire Howick, co-managers of Carrotmob, hope to make a dip into the fund for the $13,000 purchase. Compared to a normal Thursday night, profits were already up 45 percent by 9:30 p.m.