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🌱 Corporate kindness isn't just for Christmas: From Brewgooder to NEMI Teas.
Featuring Honest Crust, The Cornish Spirits Drinks Company, allplants and more...
This week we’re getting festive…
Corporate Christmas Kindness: How to do it right - learn from Brewgooder, Honest Crust, The Cornish Spirits Drinks Company and more…
How NEMI Teas make every sip meaningful for refugees.
In case you missed it: Meet the Brands: allplants are going all-in on a more sustainable food system, featuring Ellie Harrison, Sustainability Lead.
Psst… our next weekly newsletter will be on Monday 10th January. Yep, we’re taking a two week Christmas break and swapping to Mondays! We’ll explain more next week, but in case you miss that - have a great festive break, thank you for your support in 2021 and we’ll see you on the 10th ⭐️ Now for this week’s newsletter…
> Good News This Week
🎯 Yeo Valley has replaced fresh cream pots for recyclable bottles. The packaging is made from 50% recycled plastic and is 100% recyclable.
⭐️ Biotech company LanzaTech announced its partnership with Inditex, owner of Zara, to deliver textiles made from captured carbon emissions
⭐️ Patagonia received a U.S. Department of State’s Award for Corporate Excellence (ACE) in climate innovation. Patagonia was recognized for its conservation work in its namesake region of Patagonia in Argentina.
⭐️ Walmart announced that it has added science-based targets to its supply chain finance program, with the aim of helping smaller and mid-size companies make their operations more sustainable. They worked with HSBC and CDP.
⚡️ Sweep announced it has raised $22M in Series A funding. This is the highest publicly disclosed Series A round by any carbon management platform, and it will help it expand its platform and team.
⚡️ Ecosia launched a Shopping feature for refurbished and sustainable products. The search company takes a small percentage from these affiliate links (between two and five per cent) and use the revenue to continue its green endeavour.
> Click on each link to read more.
> Quick Take
Corporate Christmas Kindness: How To Do It Right
Christmas is a time of giving. Yet this can be a difficult balancing act for any business. What differentiates strong, purpose-driven initiatives from cynical ploys on consumers’ emotions? How can brands market charity campaigns without appearing to jump on a disingenuous corporate ‘kindness’ bandwagon? It would be a huge shame for brands to be discouraged from genuine charitable initiatives, so we’re highlighting the ways we believe brands are doing it right…
Put your money where your mouth is
It’s easy, come Christmas, to pay lip service to kindness. It’s this that makes a Christmas campaign slip from an endorsement of generosity to a questionable capitalisation of Christmas spirit. Purpose driven advertising company Good-Loop’s Amy Williams highlights Amazon’s Christmas ad as a cautionary tale. Though espousing sensitivity to mental health, the corporate megalith fails to make any real donation or initiative to the myriad of good causes in this area. As a result, it appears insincere.
Contrast this with brands such as Brewgooder and Honest Crust, who build on long-standing commitments to charitable partnerships. Brewers Brewgooder are known for their purpose-driven initiatives, and their Christmas campaign to bring meals to the Homeless with Social Bite is just another example. Food-to-go brand Honest Crust similarly embed their Christmas venture with food distribution heroes Fare Share in a partnership that’s already seen them donate 200,000 meals to the homeless.
The key difference is that Brewgooder and Honest Crust’s Christmas campaigns align with their brand identities. They’ve built a narrative as purpose-driven brands, and this fits into their storyline. Rather than capitalising on heightened emotions, they’ve used Christmas spirit to boost pre-existing initiatives.
Don’t make your donations too conditional
There’s nothing wrong with wrapping your campaign into a limited package. This special marketing can serve as a crucial boost to initiatives, and therefore the good causes they support. However, brands can go too far with the limits they place on consumers.
Food giant Heinz has a long-standing partnership with food charity Magic Breakfast, aiming to bring nutritious breakfasts to schoolchildren. Their latest Christmas campaign builds on this. So far so good. Where this campaign arguably falls down is its conditional element: only if you buy a rare, highly limited edition can will a child get a free portion of beans. This fails to learn the lesson of one of the most hated campaigns in history: Mastercard’s disastrous 2018 FIFA World Cup charity campaign. The condition that undernourished children should only receive a free hot meal if Lionel Messi scored a goal reduced the pledge to a mere betting game. It was transparently insincere, and it fell flat as a result.
Look to plant-based meal box providers allplants as a great example. Their Christmas collaboration with humanitarian charity Choose Love sees them contribute from every box sold during advent to partners providing meals to refugee families. This harnesses the feverish enthusiasm of the Christmas period, while providing every opportunity for consumers to participate in the campaign. Much like their meal boxes, it’s well balanced.
If you’re a local business, make the most of community spirit
Small businesses can be integral to the communities in which they operate. This means they’re uniquely placed to unite locals and generate a real movement. A lovely example is the partnership between The Cornish Spirits Drinks Company and St Eval Candle Company to produce the ‘Cornwall’s Ray of Light’ gift set. Launching in Truro’s renowned Great Cornish Food Store, the box aids Cornwall-based charity Shelterbox, providing shelter and tools to those affected by crises. Successful charity campaigns aren’t only available to big brands. Smaller businesses can be equally, if not even more, effective.
So, how can businesses do charity Christmas campaigns right? The lessons from above boil down to one simple truth - genuine good intentions shine through. There’s no better way to illustrate this authenticity than to let your reputation precede you. If Brewgooder, allplants, and Honest Crust have shown us anything, it’s that kindness isn’t just for Christmas.
Want to learn about corporate charity partnerships? This Government-published guide is a great way to get informed.
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> Brand Spotlight
NEMI Teas make every sip meaningful for refugees.
London-based tea company NEMI Teas make every sip meaningful. How?
They focus on providing employment to refugees, giving them the opportunity to find local work experience and also boost their job readiness skills.
Not only does this prepare refugees for the UK workforce, but it also helps them integrate into society and feel welcome in the UK. Refugees have been granted UK citizenship, yet often struggle to find work. NEMI Teas helps refugees find placements in local cafes in London where they can gain skills, interact with customers and earn a salary. Often, NEMI also supports the refugees in finding training and courses to boost their skills. They’re focused on making real tangible changes to the lives of refugees. Read Ladan’s story, or Ashkan’s story, to see how.
They’ve also ensured the footprint they leave on the planet is minimal.
They use biodegradable tea bags made from a Polylactic Acid (PLA) mesh filter, which is derived from 100% non-GMO sugarcane. The strings and labels are attached using ultrasounds, to replace glue. They also pride themselves on plastic free packaging, by championing a material called NatureFlex™ instead. NatureFlex™ films are derived from cellulose, which are also proven to be suitable for home composting.
Having recently won the SEUK Environmental Social Enterprise of the Year award, NEMI Teas are proving that corporate kindness isn’t just for Christmas, it can be embedded into highly successful business models too.
Support NEMI Teas via their shop:
> In case you missed it
💥 #9 - Meet the Brands: allplants are going all-in on a more sustainable food system.
Featuring Ellie Harrison, Sustainability Lead at allplants
> Follow up with…
Marketplace: Ethical Christmas Gift Guide - Goodfind