Published during the first industrial revolution, Adam Smith’s The Wealth of Nations used the metaphor of “the invisible hand of the market” to describe how the decisions of self-interested individuals in a free market economy could promote the general betterment of the society as a whole. To this day, free market proponents use Smith’s metaphor to argue for elimination of regulations for a more efficient economy. But the “invisible hand” only makes societally beneficial decisions to the extent that it has good information.
It’s hard to believe that a fast-food burger chain would actively set a target to reduce red meat consumption by its customers. After all, that generous meat patty smacked in the middle of two fresh buns is the reason why such restaurants exist, right? But Sweden’s beloved Max Burgers is doing just that, and sales across its 120 stores have never been better.
In the midst of the “purpose revolution,” people are increasingly taking company values to heart when it comes to purchasing and employment decisions (and this is especially true when it comes to young consumers and job seekers).
In April of 2000, Clif Bar owner and founder Gary Erickson turned down a $120 million offer to buy Clif Bar & Company. Instead of taking it easy the rest of his life, Erickson decided to keep Clif Bar private and pursue a unique business model known as the Five Aspirations: Sustaining Its Business, Brands, People, Community and the Planet.
Gen Z is bypassing the traditional political system and focusing on consumerism as a channel for change, according to new research from non-profit consultancy DoSomething Strategic. This generation is expecting brands to use their platform for good, especially as they feel that politicians and the political system have let them down.
It’s official. Sustainability is mainstream.
You probably already knew that. What you may not know is that Americans aren’t really changing their personal behaviors. They’re changing their buying behaviors. And that gives brands a new way to win in the marketplace.
Here’s what we’re seeing in our ongoing polling of Americans to understand their attitudes and behaviors related to the environment:
One of our most recent surveys finds that 88 percent of Americans believe the average person should be taking concrete steps to reduce environmental impact, and nearly 80 percent feel a sense of personal responsibility to change daily purchase habits and practices to positively impact the environment.
Last year saw unprecedented natural disasters across the globe – from wildfires in California to record-breaking hurricanes in the U.S. Gulf Coast, eastern seaboard, Puerto Rico and the Caribbean. At the same time, scientists warn that the risks posed by climate change are even more dire than predicted and will lead to even bigger impacts on heat and extreme weather. Combined, this has led to a spike in environmental consciousness, not only for the American people, but for businesses across the globe.
With 4.85 million active listings, Airbnb commands the largest portfolio in the industry, larger than the top five biggest hotel companies combined. The company that put home sharing on the map recently shared some of its 2017 data and celebrated its diverse community of travellers from over 190 regions of origin. 38 million US travelers used Airbnb internationally and 31 million travelers stayed at an Airbnb listing in the US.
As food supply chains grow more complex, consumers are setting higher expectations for food quality, safety and sustainability as they seek more aspirational choices around what they eat. But food scares continue to happen, one of the most famous being the horse meat scandal in 2013.
New evidence suggests that sustainability standards are drivers of the adoption and improvement of corporate practices. Its welcome news following CDP’s recent examination of the gap between corporate intentions and action on tackling climate-related risks.
Increasingly, businesses are using their clout to influence governments to advance a fair, inclusive and sustainable society and position their business for success. They recognize that government leadership is essential to develop progressive economic, social and environmental public policy to realize a future in which business and society can prosper.
The Hershey Company has announced a new comprehensive strategy for cocoa sustainability with an emphasis on addressing pressing issues facing cocoa-growing communities such as poverty, poor nutrition, at-risk youth, and vulnerable ecosystems. Cocoa For Good will involve collaborative programs, partnerships, and a half-a-billion dollars in investments by 2030.
McDonald’s has made strides towards sustainability this month: it’s the first restaurant company to set an approved Science-Based Target to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions; it’s launching a Chicken Sustainability Advisory Council; and it will begin trials to test paper straws – rather than plastic – in several of its U.K. locations.
Sustainable Brands has recently reported on a range of really interesting, wide-range of initiatives coming out of the beer industry, including innovative packaging solutions, the use of renewable energy and efforts to address climate change and water scarcity.
Good products and profits have long been the hallmark of successful businesses, but in a shifting economic landscape these traditional metrics no longer hold up, as consumers, employees and investors are increasingly looking to corporations to act on environmental and social issues. So how can businesses succeed in an age of disruption?
Ceres has released a new interactive web-based analysis examining how more than 600 of the largest publicly traded companies in the US are responding to urgent calls to act on climate change and other sustainability issues, and positioning themselves for success in a world shaped by these unprecedented environmental and social challenges. This is the third assessment of these companies, which represent more than 80 percent of the US market share.
Following the tragic shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. on February 14 that left 17 people dead, businesses are using their influence to drive change. Over the past several weeks, an onslaught of corporations ranging from Delta to Symantec and Enterprise have announced that they will be cutting ties with gun advocacy group National Rifle Association (NRA).
When Walmart announced its Project Gigaton goals in 2017, it raised the bar for corporate climate action. This ambitious commitment is aimed at reducing emissions from Scope 3 sources by one billion tons by 2030.
This is the third in a series of articles examining how business leaders and companies can transform their corporate culture in order to succeed in the midst of the impending Purpose Revolution. Find links to the full series below.
Nested between smart mirrors, driverless cars, and paper-thin TVs, a little duck fluffed its feathers, awaiting its big debut.
Unlike most of the 3,900+ products at the crowded cultural phenomenon that is the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), the duck was not for sale. No matter: the response from attendees was remarkable.