Company's MIssion to Improve the World through Gardening Resonates throughout U.S.
Submitted by: Gardener's Supply
Posted: Mar 07, 2014 – 09:30 AM EST
BURLINGTON, Vt., Mar. 07 /CSRwire/ - B Corp, the premiere entity that measures the social and environmental practices of businesses nationwide and internationally, has certified Gardener’s Supply of Burlington, Vermont, a leading online and catalog garden products retailer and wholesaler, as a Certified B Corporation.
B Lab, is the national non-profit that certifies and supports B Corporations. B Lab conducted a rigorous evaluation of Gardener’s Supply and determined that the company met the comprehensive performance standards required to qualify for certification. Gardener’s Supply will join other Certified B Corporations that are legally empowered to consider the impact of their decisions on their employees, suppliers, community, consumers and environment.
Gardener’s Supply is 100% employee-owned and is nationally known for their award-winning gardening products, progressive management style and commitment to building community through gardening. The prestigious B Corporation designation is awarded to companies that use the power of business to solve social and environmental problems and which meet higher standards of social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability.
Gardener’s Supply has long been a socially responsible business, becoming 100% employee-owned in 2009, supporting gardening-related good works efforts nationwide, developing and sourcing sustainable products, supporting employee volunteerism, and donating 8 percent of profits back to the community. Founded in 1983 by Will Raap and a handful of enthusiastic gardeners, the company was also co-founder of Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility (VBSR), one of the most active corporate social responsibility organizations in the U.S.
“Our business and our employee-owners have been focused on the triple-bottom line of people, planet and profits since we started in 1983, so this is a logical next step for us.” said Jim Feinson, President of Gardener’s Supply Company.
“B Corp certification will help us create new conversations about our social and environmental impact, around the company, with our customers and in the community, and help us set ongoing performance goals to achieve as our business continues to grow.
"Gardener’s Supply is proud to achieve B Corp certification and join the growing community of B Corp businesses committed to conscientious and sustainable business practices,” continued Feinson.
Gardener's Supply actively promotes gardening as a way for people to make the world a better place. The company supports programs and organizations that are using gardening to improve quality of life and the health of our environment. The company provides garden grants in Vermont and across the U.S. that focus on gardening and hunger-relief, supporting many community gardens, workplace gardens and urban farms.
The company's headquarters are located in Burlington, Vermont in an area known as the Intervale. In 1986, Gardener’s Supply spearheaded an Intervale clean-up effort to restore the area – 700 acres of bottomland within the city limits of Burlington, Vermont – to its agricultural roots. The company founded the non-profit Intervale Center, an independent nationally recognized resource, incubating new farms and educating small scale farmers on diversified sustainable agricultural practices.
Gardener’s Supply also has on-site gardens dedicated to raising and donating fresh produce to local food shelves. The company also collaborated with the Intervale Center to initiate a gleaning program to harvest surplus vegetables that farmers would not otherwise harvest for market. In 2013, the combined efforts of the Gardener’s Supply on-site gardens and the Intervale Center gleaning program donated more than 9,000 pounds of fresh produce to local food banks.
About Gardener’s Supply
Founded in 1983, Gardener’s Supply is an 100% employee-owned company of avid gardeners providing garden-tested, earth-friendly products combined with practical information. Located in Burlington, Vermont, the company has won many awards for its innovative gardening products, online gardening content and progressive management style. Gardener’s Supply is now a Certified B Corporation.
About B Corp
Certified B Corporations meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, legally expand their corporate responsibilities to include consideration of stakeholder interests, and build collective voice through the power of the unifying B Corporation brand. As of February 2014, there are more than 900 Certified B Corporations from over 60 industries and 28 countries, representing a diverse multi-billion dollar marketplace.
About B Lab
B Lab is a nonprofit organization that serves a global movement to redefine success in business so that all companies compete not only to be the best in the world, but the best for the world. B Lab drives this systemic change through a number of interrelated initiative: 1) building a community of Certified B Corporations to make it easier for all of us to tell the difference between “good companies” and good marketing; 2) passing legislation to accelerate growth of social entrepreneurship and impact investing (12 states have already passed benefit corporation legislation); 3) driving capital to high impact investments through the use of GIIRS Ratings and Analytics (more than 60 investors with over $3B in impact assets under management use GIIRS); and 4) providing free, powerful tools for businesses to measure, compare and improve their social and environmental performance (more than 7,000 businesses use B Lab’s free B Impact Assessment).