Let it bee …

Veröffentlicht: April 11, 2012 von Ms. Wednesday Luise in Social Entrepreneurs, Start Ups
Schlagwörter:, ,

After our mind has been struck and exposed to a novel concept, we often start spotting its materializations everywhere in the environment that surrounds us.

Situations in which that occurs can be various, it feels like anything may pop up suddenly anywhere. Staring through the window while on the bus, walking down the street or shopping for food at your local supermarket. In the latter of such situations I got to know Innocent.

Who’s innocent you will ask ? Well, the usual reply would say “no one is”. But some of us try to be. Even a business may try … and kind of succeed.

Innocent Drinks was born in a music festival in London, where founders (and Cambridge graduates) Richard Reed, Adam Balon and Jon Wright sold for the first time the result of six months spent trying out smoothie recipes. They asked customers to return their empty bottles in two 2 boxes, marked “yes” and “no” as an answer to the question “Shall we quit our jobs and start a smoothies business?”.

All returned bottles but three were in the “yes” can. And so they started.

From there to market 15 months passed, including the initial struggle to find investors ending up positively with 250.000 pounds in the new born company’s pockets.

If Google has “don’t be evil” as their mantra, Innocent’s mantra could be defined as “be an angel!”. Or be .. innocent.

The company produces a rich line of delightful pure fruit smoothies and drinks. But what makes them different is the effort put in being a sustainable business and the style used for communicating that to customers.

Want an example ? How about buying a drink and adopting a bee at the same time?

A third of the modern food chain relies on bees and pollen, as without bees flowers could not transform into fruit. And without fruit ? No smoothies!

A code on the smoothie bottles and a website to follow the “adoption” has let customers in some countries to actually do such thing, while making them aware of the importance of the insect, endangered by a surprising population decline happening in some European countries and Asia.

On the other hand, this kind of initiatives, despite greatly contributing to the social image of the brand, don’t directly contribute to building a sustainable business.

Because a sustainable business cannot be built out of unsustainable resources, right ?

Luckily the guys at Innocent seem to know that quite well, taking care of lowering the environmental and social impact of their product life cycle in all its aspects.

They set standards of sustainability for their suppliers and all actors involved in their B2B “ecosystem”. They collaborate with a number of organizations like the Rainforest Alliance and research on new ways to build an overall sustainable diet.

Their recent “thirsty berries” initiative has started an effort towards a better analysis and optimization of the water consumption of the strawberry plantations used by the brand in the south of Spain. All this also with the objective of minimizing impact on the surrounding ecosystem, composed also by an important national park.

Get to know more about the fruit smoothie and its unique taste, the Innocent Foundation, how to adopt a bee and how to be nice to Mother Nature at innocentdrinks.com.

Have fun there, I certainly had.

  1. […] of turkish cultural customs. The company Innocent drinks (mentioned in Luise’s post “Let it bee“) is an example which I would put into the same category. These are entrepreneurships wherein […]

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