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Press Release
Business Leaders Propel Sustainable Urban Agrihood in Detroit

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SAN FRANCISCO, November 30, 2016 - Sustainable Brands® joins forces with the Michigan Urban Farming Initiative (MUFI) and BASF to debut a mixed-use urban agriculture development project today. A new Community Resource Center in Detroit’s lower North End is the result of business leaders in the Sustainable Brands community collaborating to redefine growth and development models in urban communities.

Catalyzed by multi-sector business and nonprofit leaders in the Sustainable Brands community, the Urban Agrihood will feature a new Community Resource Center (CRC), healthy food café, two-acre urban garden, 200-tree high-density fruit orchard, sensory garden, and more. The 3,200 square-foot community center will offer educational programs, event and meeting space, and serve as MUFI’s new operational headquarters. It will also house two commercial kitchens on the first floor that will service the café and allow for future production and packaging of valued goods. The café is planned to be located on land adjacent to the CRC. Both the CRC and café are scheduled to be unveiled at Sustainable Brands’ largest global peer-to-peer gathering, SB’17 Detroit, scheduled to be held at Cobo Center, May 22-25, 2017.

“This urban agriculture redevelopment project in many ways encompasses the core values of the Sustainable Brands community,” states Geoff Trotter, Chief Development Officer at Sustainable Brands. “Our global initiative is a call to create a collective and locally relevant vision of what the ‘good life’ means for a healthy individual, family, community, city, country and planet. SB’17 Detroit will highlight ideas and companies who are redefining new global societal aspirations that point us toward a sustainable future and the Detroit Urban Agrihood is an exemplary model for cities across the globe to emulate.”

Joining this effort is General Motors, Herman-Miller, and environmental firm Green Standards. General Motors is further strengthening its commitment to Detroit through its recently announced rePurpose program, a collaboration with Herman Miller and Green Standards. Under the program, GM will supply the CRC with repurposed office furniture and other surplus office items accrued during their current renovations. Herman Miller is also providing furniture layout and design consultation for the renovated spaces.

Multifaceted, collaborative partnerships are not new to business leaders in the Sustainable Brands community. SB’17 Detroit will bring together respected thought leaders, top brands and key disruptive innovators with intent to create a new narrative around what ‘The Good Life’ entails. The Urban Agrihood is a manifestation of the kind of work accomplished by companies who participate in the SB Activation Hub, a forum at Sustainable Brands conferences whereby brands actively search for partners, solutions and tools to propel their sustainability goals into tangible reality. Alongside the all-volunteer nonprofit MUFI, sponsors like BASF and General Motors are bringing the results of their ideas conceived during collaborative conversations out into the community. This work is especially critical in Detroit, where countless inspiring experiments of the next economy are already percolating.

Sustainable Brands is actively looking for additional partners to contribute to this ground-breaking project. For further information, contact Jonathan Reese at [email protected] or call 1.415.563.6574.

SB’17 Detroit is scheduled for May 22-25, 2017 at the Cobo Center in Detroit, MI. To learn more about the conference and potential sponsorship opportunities, visit or email the SB team at [email protected]


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