This March, The Local Crowd Monadnock invites you to celebrate Shop Indie Sustainable Month.
We’re teaming up with the American Independent Business Alliance and partners throughout North America to spotlight businesses that benefit our local economy, environment, and community -- triple-bottom-line businesses such as B Corps, cooperatives, and other enterprises. We’ll highlight a few triple-bottom-line companies in this article.
Plus, we’ll spotlight more throughout March, so please stay tuned!
A certification process called B Corp helps a company “measure what matters” and better balance its purpose and profits. B Lab, the nonprofit that leads this movement, currently lists 6,367 certified businesses from 89 countries.
“B Corp Certification is holistic, not exclusively focused on a single social or environmental issue,” reads B Lab’s website. “And the process to achieve and maintain certification is rigorous and requires engaging teams and departments across your company. Recertification confirms these standards continue to be met on an ongoing basis.”
Any business can fill out the B Impact Assessment online and see how they rank. For a business to become a Certified B Corp, it must earn at least 80 points in the B Impact Assessment and pay a certification fee. The certified company receives a full report with recommendations from B Lab on how to boosts its positive impacts.
One well-known B Corp in our region, Badger in Gilsum, makes healing balms, lip balms, sunscreens, and other personal care products.
“At Badger, we’ve always held true to what we call our North Star -- our vision for a healthier world,” says our Co-CEO, Rebecca Hamilton. “In the beginning, at a time when most businesses were making decisions based on the bottom line, Badger was making decisions based on strong mission-driven principles and ethos. In our mission statement, we say that money is a fuel, not a goal—meaning that our true reason for being in business is to enact our mission-based work and help create the healthier world we imagine. This commitment to doing the right thing for people and the planet continues to shape the way Badger does business today.”
Badger has committed to net zero carbon emissions by 2030 and installed a rooftop solar array in 2020. They strive to choose ingredients from suppliers that practice regenerative agriculture. The company works hard to reduce plastic packaging, as well.
A new B Corp in our region, Frisky Cow Gelato in Keene, makes its decadent desserts from New Hampshire milk. Owner, Linda Rubin, has committed her businesses to sourcing at least half of all its supplies and ingredients locally and donating 2% of its annual revenue to nonprofits building our local food system and boosting food security.
“Why gelato? Back in 1983, I visited Florence, Italy and fell in love with gelato! The creamy texture and rich flavors totally won me over,” shared Linda. “Ten years later, I moved to New Hampshire and started working at Stonewall Farm, a nonprofit education center and dairy farm in Keene. I spent almost nine years working at Stonewall Farm, educating people about where their food comes from and the importance of local agriculture. I dreamed about making a value-added dairy product someday.”
Cooperatives, companies owned by their members, also represent triple-bottom-line businesses. A cooperative exists to serve its members and follows seven guiding principles, including democratic member control and concern for community.
Monadnock Food Co-op, a grocery store in Keene owned by over 4,000 community members, uses the cooperative business model. While everyone can shop at our Co-op, members receive additional benefits such as quarterly discounts, patronage refunds, and vote on who serves on the board of directors.
Monadnock Food Co-op’s roof hosts our region’s first locally owned community-supported solar project. The project is locally controlled, whereas most community solar projects are owned and managed by developers or utilities. The Monadnock Sustainability Hub developed the New Hampshire Community Supported Solar Guide from this project to help others replicate this project and bring more renewable energy to our region.
Other recent sustainability efforts include transitioning the Co-op’s deli, bulk, and produce departments’ grab & go containers from recyclable plastic to compostable packaging. You can compost these containers when you eat in the Co-op’s cafe. Also, the Co-op hosts an outdoor pick-up station for Elm City Compost customers to make home composting easier.
Coming in 2024, the Co-op will install two Electric Vehicle DC fast chargers and two level 2 electric vehicle chargers outside its building. Monadnock Food Co-op received a grant through the Volkswagen settlement funds to cover 80% of the project's costs. The remaining 20% was raised through The Local Crowd Monadnock and other fundraising efforts.
The Co-op also hosts the annual Monadnock Region Earth Festival. They will fill the space from Railroad Square to the Co-op with local vendors, artists, farmers, and producers to celebrate the Earth and our community’s commitment to sustainability. Save the date for this year’s event on Saturday, April 22 from 12 pm – 4 pm.
A big thank you to this year’s local Shop Indie Sustainable partners: Food Connects, Monadnock Food Co-op, Stonewall Farm, and TLC Monadnock.
Stay tuned for Shop Indie Sustainable Month updates and how we’re collectively building stronger local economies that support community and our environment.
The Local Crowd Monadnock - Mailing Address: 63 Emerald St. #114, Keene, NH 03431