Welcome to the first instalment of our new B Corp Series!
This week, we interviewed Pablo & Rusty’s - the coffee subscription company with a passion for sustainability. We asked them about what it means to be a B Corp, what their plans are for the future, and of course a few coffee-related questions to hear from the experts themselves.
Hi Pablo & Rusty’s! For those who don’t know, tell us a little about yourselves.
Hey wonderful Eva People! It’s a pleasure to be here.
We’re Sydney-based specialty Coffee Roasters. We’re a purpose-driven, impact-focused organisation passionate about positively impacting people and the planet through coffee.
We’re B Corp certified (just like the fine folks at Eva). We’re also the first Coffee Roaster in Australia to be certified Carbon Neutral Organisation by Climate Active Australia, the Australian government-backed gold standard in climate certification.
Most recently, we became 1% for the Planet members, which means we donate 1% of our Revenue (not profit) to 1% for the Planet certified Not for Profits, their purpose is to tackle the impacts of climate change. We’re amongst a small number of organisations globally that have all three certifications, an achievement we’re pretty proud of.
We are committed to helping our community Drink Better Coffee(™).
We want to make drinking delicious and ethical coffee easy for everyone, be it freshly roasted beans, biodegradable and compostable coffee pods, coffee concentrate or even canned nitro coffee. All are available via our flexible Coffee Subscriptions service (free shipping). Fresh Coffee delivered right to your doorstep anywhere in Australia.
We love our At Home coffee community and we also partner with great cafes supplying them with ethically and sustainably sourced coffee, equipment solutions, training, and support.
What does it mean to you to be a B Corp?
As a B-Corp Coffee Roaster, we must meet the highest standards of environmental and social performance, governance and accountability, diversity and focus on both purpose and profit. It’s an external check to make sure we stay true to our purpose and goals.
We’re proudly part of a community and movement that includes over 4000 businesses in over 70 countries, creating a network of organisations passionate about using business as a force for good.
Our community can feel confident that we care about our outputs and impact when they purchase from B Corps like us and Eva. We’re always striving to do more good. We don't just talk the talk; we choose to be measured against our actions.
Why should coffee companies care about sustainability, and what can they do about it?
There’s no Plan / Planet B; we recognise as an organisation, like all other coffee roasters, we take from the natural environment, we leave a mark and a footprint. We are not perfect and there is a lot for us to still do. Our aim is to take care of our own footprint and then do as much good as possible to restore the planet.
Due to the impacts of climate change, coffee growing regions around the world are grappling with unprecedented challenges. From floods and droughts to disease, and pest outbreaks. All these factors limit supply, thus forcing coffee prices up for everybody. These pressures will result in some coffee companies as well as farmers struggling with challenging business conditions and unfortunately not all will survive.
As businesses and individuals, it’s all of our responsibility to limit our negative footprint from reducing, removing, or repurposing our waste and using technology and innovation to drive positive change. Part of our mission is to pave the way and inspire other brands to take actions towards better sustainability.
The first steps can be to measure one’s organisational footprint and then seeking ways to mitigate, reduce, or offset it. Together we can all move the needle in the right direction, small and consistent actions can make a tremendous difference over time.
In the long run we believe that sustainable business will do better for the planet as well as in business terms. Customers will choose to partner with brands that are proven to be better custodians of this planet we all share.
Your B Corp score increased this year (from 80.9 in 2017) to 89.8. What do you think helped improve your score over the last few years?
A few years ago we set ourselves 3 simple sustainability targets we could get behind and work towards. By 2025:
1. 100% of our packaging will be Compostable or Recyclable. We're on our way to achieving this.
2. Become a 1% for the Planet member organisation. We’re proud to have achieved this milestone in 2021.
3. Achieve a B Corp Score of 100+. Whilst we’ve made significant progress towards our goal, it’s no easy task and this is by design. The B Corp certification process is rigorous and designed to help push organisations towards a better future. We believe it’s important to set audacious goals - creating a north star so to speak that our team can strive towards. The gains we’ve made have been in part due to reduced footprint, becoming carbon neutral and giving more back to environmental efforts amongst other things. We still have a lot more to do to get to our goal of 100+.
More information about our B Corp and sustainability journey can be found in our Impact Report.
What are your ambitions as a B Corp?
In the long-run, we hope for all businesses to be a force of good. We recognise growing a sustainable business is an ongoing journey not a destination. A journey we’re on together with our customers and community.
Firstly, we do this for ourselves. We want to look forward to coming into work every day. We want to make sure that we are making a lasting difference regardless of our roles in our business. We want to protect our plant for future generations. It’s not easy as it’s a much harder way of doing things. However, we don’t believe there is another way.
We hope our journey, learnings, and achievements can help inspire other organisations to strive towards a new way of doing business. Setting themselves ambitious goals and thinking differently, achieving both purpose and profit and succeeding today and tomorrow.
Our aim is to become the best coffee company for the planet. Being part of the B Corp movement will help ensure we’re on the right track to achieving that.
What changes would you like to see in the industry in the future?
Our independent certifications ensure we’re held to account for the words we speak and importantly the actions we take. There are many areas we need to keep improving and these external certifications help us identify those areas and keep improving.
We’d love to see more brands go through independent certifications and consumers to look out for these. Independent certifications bring verification and trust to the whole industry.
We’re excited that regulatory bodies are looking at forcing brands to back up their statements and call out spin which will help consumers make more informed and better buying decisions.
Iced coffee or hot coffee?
Hot (a beautifully brewed filter coffee) but with an opportunity for the coffee to cool allowing flavours, nuance, and complexity to be revealed.
Morning coffees in bed or out and about?
With a young family, definitely out and about in nature, preferable enjoying my coffee in my Huskee Cup (fellow B Corp).
Oat milk or almond milk?
Oat all the way, I feel when paired with coffee, it offers a more balanced expression of that particular coffee.