Let’s Talk B-Corp: What’s a B Corporation Certification?

March 10, 2021 4 min read

Let’s Talk B-Corp: What’s a B Corporation Certification?

Before you read any further, take a second to look around: any of these brands floating around somewhere in your house or office?


Ben & Jerry’s *  Klean Kanteen * Allbirds * Danone * Tillamook * Thrive * Market * 4oceans Toms * Athleta * Patagonia


These companies, and many hundreds more like them, including ChicoBag and To-Go Ware, hold a B Corporation Certification. You’ve probably seen the logo more places than you realize--and for good reason! B Corporation Certification is becoming more and more popular (now more than 3,500 worldwide!), because more and more businesses want to leave a legacy of doing good! 


Today, we’re here to tell you why it’s important and why we’re part of this growing family of industry leaders.


First off, what’s a B Corporation business?

A business with a  B Corporation Certification meets “the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability to balance profit and purpose.”


In other words, B Corp Certified businesses believe they are responsible for creating positive change in our global society. They believe in making positive change for their employees, the worldwide community, and the environment. Specifically, they fight for “reduced inequality, lower levels of poverty, a healthier environment, stronger communities, and the creation of more high quality jobs with dignity and purpose.” 


How does a B Corp business make a difference?


Essentially, a B Corp business is operating at incredibly high standards by ensuring great working conditions for its employees, giving back in the community and engaging in social improvement, and building in legal requirements to do good for people and the planet.



Why would a company want to gain a B Corporation Certification?


Short answer: a lot of reasons! A B Corporation Certification can help a company maintain high goals for social and community impact, attract like-minded employees, demonstrate intentions, and legally protect their mission.


Andrea Walker from Beneficial State Bank gives  a great example of why an organization would want to become a B Corp business: “Aligning our company with . . . this powerful movement has been incredibly rewarding. As a bank, we often get perceived as a company that makes profits at the expense of people and the planet, but this certification has helped us differentiate ourselves and show how we are doing the exact opposite. It's provided a credible basis to tell our story of how we are dedicated to healing the banking system for good.”


How does a company achieve a Corporation Certification?


The first step is to take a B Impact Assessment, which is administered by the non-profit B Lab, to evaluate a company’s overall impact on staff, community, clients, and the planet. If they meet the high standards, they company must place their B Impact Report on bcorporation.net and change their legal documents to require their board of directors to balance profit and purpose.

 

It’s rigorous for a reason: the trifecta of legal requirements, third-party validation, and public transparency means everybody is on the same page and working towards the same goals.

 

Madeleine Albright, Former U.S. Secretary of State,  agreed: “I often wonder to what extent business can help society in its goals to alleviate poverty, preserve ecosystems, and build strong communities and institutions…B Lab has proven that there is a way." 

What is ChicoBag doing as a B Corp?


ChicoBag gained a  B Corporation Certification in 2013, and we’ve been working hard to prove our purpose ever since.  In 2020, we included our B Corp Certification as one of our 7 initiatives in our  Pledge for the Planet Commitment.


“We became a B Corp because we wanted to share our long-held business ethics, our standards, and our sustainability practices with the larger world. We were excited to add our voice to the growing community of companies with a mission, and to show the world there is a better way to do business. We hope others are inspired to join us,”  said Andy Keller, ChicoBag President and Founder.

 

Since 2013, we’ve earned a number of awards for our efforts, including the most recent (2020 isn’t available yet!)  2019 Best For the World: Environment award for being in the top 10% on the B Impact Assessment for our work in sustainable planet practices.

 

We are proud to be a part of a committed group of worldwide businesses committed to helping with society’s most challenging problems and together being a force for good. 

 

How does being a B Corp affect YOU?

 

When you partner with us as a fellow business, or you purchase ChicoBag or To-Go Ware products as a customer, you know you’re working with an organization committed to high standards that meet your own values. You can feel good about working with, or supporting a company committed to quality, sustainability, fair labor, and ethical standards. 

 

Transparency and authenticity has been key to our operations since day one, and being B Corp certified means we’re held publicly and legally accountable to our goal. You have easily-accessible proof  we’re working hard to help our community and the world around us, and you have the opportunity to become part of this change!

 

Learn more about our B Corp initiatives  here!