business news in context, analysis with attitude

The Seattle Times reports on the values-driven business decisions being made by Choice Organic Teas, which recently decided to invest in a machine that ties string to tea bags rather than stapling it…because owner Blake Rankin didn’t want all those staples ending up in landfills.

“Rankin is no dummy,” according to the Times. “The machine also runs twice as fast as his three stapling models. But he is guided more by a sense of moral obligation to the environment, farmers and consumers than by a desire to expand his business.”

According to the paper, Choice Organic Teas also is the first US tea brand to receive Fair Trade certification, “which adds costs to the tea but ensures that farmers in developing countries receive living wages.”
KC's View:
Once again, it can be compelling to consumers to hear these kinds of narratives. We’d never thought about tea bag staples and landfills, but when you hear this kind of comment, it just makes sense.

We think we’re all going to be hearing a lot more of these kinds of stories in the year ahead. The fragile nature of the planet is simply going to force the issue, and businesses would be well advised to find ways to embrace these scenarios as opportunities.