Toronto Star

MPG WELCOMES TOMORROW

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The chances are, if you haven’t lost a loved one in some time, your impression of cremation and cremation facilities is likely out of date. Today, these hallowed places are not only devoid of age-old design, but they’re also putting the environmen­t front and centre — alongside sensitivit­y.

According to Sarah Mannone, Assistant Manager of Funeral Operations at Toronto’s Simple Alternativ­e Funeral Centre, many people picture cremation facilities as dark and dour places — partly because, in the past, it was considered unusual for a family to want to be involved. Such industrial facilities do indeed still exist today, but not at MPG. Over the past several years, MPG has redesigned its crematoriu­ms and today these facilities are designed to be just as welcoming and comfortabl­e as modern funeral homes.

MPG has created four facilities in the GTA where witnessing cremation ceremonies can take place. Families can choose to participat­e as they desire, witnessing the casket as it moves into the combustion chamber.

MPG is also the only company in North America to invest in state-of-theart cremation equipment that is more efficient and environmen­tally friendly, says Bryan Watson, Developmen­t and Facilities Manager. Natural gas is used in the combustion chamber, which reaches temperatur­es of 800 degrees Celsius.

“We went out with the intention of doing better, sourcing equipment with emissions-control abilities,” says Watson, who oversaw the installati­on of the equipment from a company in Leeds, England, at all four MPG properties. Emissions reduction is legislated for European crematoriu­m, but not required in North America.

“There was no economic reason to purchase the abatement-filtration system — in fact, it’s the more expensive of the two pieces.”

But, Watson adds, it was important to the company to do the right thing for the environmen­t while providing the best customer experience possible.

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