Business

Retailer rallies for sustainability

Shaun Daniels (left), Nature’s Fare Markets general manager, Alexa Monahan, marketing director, Brenton MacKenzie, purchaser, and Chisa Rosa, vitamins rep, are excited by the company’s B Corp certification. - lisa VanderVelde/Morning Star
Shaun Daniels (left), Nature’s Fare Markets general manager, Alexa Monahan, marketing director, Brenton MacKenzie, purchaser, and Chisa Rosa, vitamins rep, are excited by the company’s B Corp certification.
— image credit: lisa VanderVelde/Morning Star

A Vernon-based retailer has been recognized for leading sustainability standards.

Nature’s Fare Markets has become Canada’s first retailer to receive B Corp certification from B Lab.

“We are beyond excited,” said Alexa Monahan, whose family owns Nature’s Fare, which sells vitamins, supplements and organic goods.

B Corp certification is a third party certification that recognizes sustainable business practices. Certification comes from B Lab, a non-profit organization dedicated to using the power of business to solve social and environmental issues.

“B Corp certification is to good business like fair trade is to coffee, and we are proud to be a member of this growing global movement,” said Monahan.

“I think it’s pretty neat that a local company from our town has become the very first retailer in Canada, in any sector, to achieve B Corp status.”

To earn B Corp Certification, Nature’s Fare had to complete an intense impact assessment, which measured the company’s actions against rigorous environmental and social standards.

Additionally, B Certification required Nature’s Fare to amend its legal incorporation statements to include commitments to key stakeholders like the environment, employees, consumers and communities.

“We have already made some progressive changes to reduce our environmental impact, and we are very active in our communities,” said Claire Volpatti, Nature’s Fare human resources director,

“However, by working through the impact assessment, we were inspired to expand our efforts and formalize more of our initiatives.”

This is not the first time that Nature’s Fare has been recognized for its activities.

It has won the Brock Elliot memorial award for excellence in retailing four times.

Monahan is hopeful other North Okanagan businesses will follow the lead of Nature’s Fare.

“We are on a mission to inspire other companies to look into what they can do to become B Corps too,” she said.

“We passionately believe that businesses must benefit society rather than take from it, and I want to motivate other businesses in our community to better themselves for the benefit of the environment, their employees, and the community. I’m eager to share this message with the people in Vernon.”

Nature’s Fare is headquartered in Vernon and it has six retail locations across B.C.

 

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