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Organic Shade-Grown Coffee

Ethical Bean Sells Fair Trade and Socially-Responsible Products

— December 10, 2010 — Social Good
Ethical Bean is a Vancouver-based coffee company that sells organic, shade-grown, fair trade coffee. Certified by B Corporation, which is an organization that judges businesses according to their social and environmental contributions, Ethical Bean’s mission includes community outreach programs that benefit children, education and the arts.

Founded by Lloyd Bernhardt and Kim Schachte, Ethical Bean’s social and environmental mission has numerous aspects. Some notables include: electricity powered by Bullfrog Power, which is Canada’s green energy supplier; helping to develop clean energy programs and reforestation in Guatemala; a HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point) certification; and a location in a green building; certification by LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design); and certification by TransFair Canada, under the Fairtrade Labeling Organization (FLO). Furthermore, Ethical Bean buys carbon offsets through the Carbon Neutral Company in order to aid in the development of clean energy programs and reforestation projects in Guatemala. Not only is this an environmental mission, but the project also ensures that local businesses and communities can have reliable electricity which has a positive impact on economic and community development.

In light of the 2010 holiday season, Ethical Bean donated a portion of their proceeds from coffee sales to send children to school in Guatemala through the Child-Aid Ethical Bean Scholarship Fund. In November 2010, Ethical Bean had an adoption fundraising program. It’s clear that their social program extends beyond simply fair trade coffee.

What is more, Ethical Bean’s popularity is growing steadily meaning that the company is better able to make a difference through a variety of outlets. Ethical Bean received a nod from none other than O: The Oprah Magazine, as one of her favourite things. It’s no surprise since Ethical Bean’s products are innovative in that they are interactive. Every bag of coffee has a six-digit lot number that you can type in on their website and find out the story of your coffee beans. This is an effort to increase the transparency of each product using embark technology. Furthermore, Ethical Bean is tuned in to the online world, with a bustling Twitter account, a colourful, but clean, website, a YouTube channel, a Facebook page and an iPhone app.

With a variety of offerings and flavours including “rocket fuel,” “mellow,” “lush,” “exotic,” and “sweet espresso,” Ethical Bean is a welcome alternative to the Starbucksization of North America.

Contact Information:
Ethical Bean Website
1315 Kootenay Street
Vancouver, BC V5K 4Y3
Telephone: 604-431-3830
Toll free: 1-877-431-3830
Fax: 604-431-3834
Trend Themes
1. Organic Coffee - Disruptive innovation opportunity: Develop new organic coffee products that are transparent and interactive, allowing consumers to learn the story behind their coffee beans.
2. Fair Trade - Disruptive innovation opportunity: Create new fair trade business models that go beyond coffee, promoting social and environmental contributions in various industries.
3. Ethical Consumerism - Disruptive innovation opportunity: Establish platforms or technologies that empower consumers to make ethical purchasing decisions and support socially-responsible companies.
Industry Implications
1. Coffee Industry - Disruptive innovation opportunity: Introduce innovative farming methods or sourcing strategies to promote organic and shade-grown coffee production, while maintaining fair trade practices.
2. Sustainable Energy Industry - Disruptive innovation opportunity: Develop clean energy programs and technologies that can be implemented in various industries, supporting both environmental sustainability and community development.
3. E-commerce Industry - Disruptive innovation opportunity: Create online platforms or applications that provide transparent product information and enable ethical consumerism, empowering customers to make informed purchasing decisions.
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