What does being a mindful consumer mean to you when it comes to what you choose to eat and drink?
For some, it might mean looking out for organic or Fairtrade goods. For others it could mean eating locally sourced, seasonal produce or choosing restaurants and cafes with a zero waste policy. It may also mean reducing your meat and dairy intake, or being fully plant-based. It could mean all of the above.
What if we could do more than that? What if we could choose brands that gave back even more to local communities and charities?
That’s entirely possible! There are food and drink brands that support clean drinking water initiatives. Some brands provide healthy meals to local schools and others with equally great sustainable endeavours.
Ever your ethical servants, here’s our list of hero UK brands that donate to charities and other good causes.
Some are certified B Corporation, or ‘B-Corp’, companies. This means that they meet the highest standards of social and environmental factors. They balance profit and purpose and are redefining business success to be more inclusive and sustainable.
Others belong to the 1% for the Planet initiative. Those that join give at least 1% of their annual sales directly to approved environmental, non profit organisations.
Both are credible, decent initiatives for brands to sign up to. So here goes:
Drinks Brands Doing Good
Whether hot, soft or alcoholic, you can do your bit with every sip.
Brewgooder produce ‘clean water lager’ – great tasting craft lager, with extra ‘do good’. They’re a B-Corp who donate 100% of their profits to clean water charities. So far, they’ve helped to fund 60 well digging projects, helping over 33,000 people in Malawi.
Their mission is to positively impact the lives of 1 million people. All at the same time as producing great beer. Find your nearest stockist and do good whilst you drink!
Cafédirect are a B-Corp producer of Fairtrade coffee, who give 50% of their profits to Producers Direct. Producers Direct is a UK charity working directly with coffee farmers. They help to improve sustainability and protect the livelihoods of the farmers.
Cafédirect have their own amazing coffee roastery in London. Plus you’ll find their great tasting coffee in most supermarkets and ethical food shops.
Waterbomb trust in the power of small steps towards positive change. A B-Corp, they help to fund the installation of clean water wells in the developing world. They do this by donating profits to Drop4Drop, a water sanitation initiative.
This enables communities to spend less time sourcing water, or drinking unsafe water, and more time improving their health. Children are able to attend schools and have much better prospects as an adult. Try Waterbomb’s fruit flavoured, zero added sugar drinks and help support this excellent cause.
Brew Tea Co
Brew Tea Co are a hot drink B-Corp doing good things in a different way. Instead of donating profits, they give all their staff two days off a year to volunteer at a charity. One member of staff recently spent time with FareShare, the food redistribution charity.
Brew Tea Co teas are made from 100% rolled, whole leaves and are hand packed in Manchester. They believe in quality ingredients to make the perfect cup of tea. Buy their plastic-free, compostable teas online.
Supporting Good Causes While You Snack
Next time you’re peckish, reach for a snack from one of these brands with ethics at their core.
The Bondi Kitchen
The Bondi Kitchen make superfood energy balls in various tasty flavours. They belong to the 1% for the Planet scheme and help to protect the planet with each energy ball sold.
Set up by an Australian born, now London based natural food chef, they’re packed with natural ingredients. Get on board by buying their healthy snacks online.
Boundless make healthy activated nut snacks. Activated nuts have been soaked, making them easier to digest, and more nutritious. These are flavoured with bold and surprising spices such as cayenne pepper, turmeric and aleppo.
Boundless support water charity Frank by regularly donating profits to the cause. Frank provides safe drinking water to communities across the world who need it the most. Find Boundless snacks at a stockist near you and snack with ethical abandon!
Montezuma is an innovate chocolate manufacturer. It’s run by a couple who spent time camping on a cocoa plantation in south America. They were inspired to make their own chocolatey treats when they returned home in 2000.
Now, the company has grown to one with a strict ‘trading fairly’ policy. They support Children on the Edge, a children’s charity that works with children quite literally living on the edge, all around the world. Find these chocolate delights online or in a shop local to you.
Cooking With a Conscience
Doing the food shopping at a bulk buy store, or going for a meal kit from an ethical brand might be easier than you think.
Earth. Food. Love
Earth. Food. Love was the UK’s first zero waste, organic, bulk buy, plant-based, wholefoods shop. And it’s wonderful! Based in Devon and run by a couple disenfranchised by living a fast paced city life, Earth. Food. Love encourages us all to live gently.
They’re a 1% for the Planet company who believe that changing the way we shop is the most planet-friendly thing we can do. If you’re local or passing through, make sure you pay them a visit.
Mindful Chef are a B-Corp company who specialise in healthy, simple meal kits. Sign up and you’ll have ready to cook meals delivered to your door as often as you like.
With each box sold, Mindful Chef donate a school meal to a child in poverty. So far, over 800,000 meals have been donated as part of the One Feeds Two charity.
Why Choosing Food and Drinks Brands Mindfully Is So Important
If we’re in a position to support brands that donate proceeds to charity, then we’re in a very good position indeed. These UK companies have worked super hard to achieve B Corp status or give 1% for the planet. Not because they have to, but because they want to.
Supporting them not only supports UK businesses but also those they’re giving back to. Because we might not see the hardship of poverty, poor working conditions or harmful practices, it doesn’t mean they don’t go on.
We can choose to support bad practices, or we can refuse to, each time we put our hands in our pockets.
But it’s ok to take things one step at a time. We can’t all do it all, all the time. Choosing to switch our snacks or change our brand of coffee can make our household kinder. Small acts make an awful lot of difference, even if we can’t see it.
Don’t believe that you alone can’t make a difference. If we all thought that, then nothing would ever change. And we’re witnessing change with brands like these, right now. Play your part, support a business doing good, and be proud!