Lotus Foods | A Certified B Corp
For over 25 years, Caryl Levine & Ken Lee, co-founders of Lotus Foods, have sought to create positive change in the world of rice, and B Corp certification measures a company’s entire social and environmental impact.
From the Alive blog post:
B Corp is a vast non-profit network with a wildly ambitious goal: “to transform the global economy to benefit all people, communities, and the planet.”
Their “Theory of Change” postulates that it is possible to “transform the economic system into a more inclusive, equitable, and regenerative global economy.” To that end, they identify negative impacts across societies and cultures, and propose global strategies for solutions.
In short, B Corp’s less than modest goal is to “shift the behavior, culture, and underpinnings of capitalism; to succeed, we must change the rules of the game.”
You can read more from Alive here: Innovation for Good: Lotus Foods and B Corp
Since 1995, Lotus Foods has been partnering in fair trade with small family farmers around the world who are growing rice sustainably and preserving rice biodiversity. The company’s intent and vision is not only to help rice farmers earn a living wage but to bring healthier rice choices to consumers.
The Lotus Foods B Corps Impact Score can be viewed here. Based on the B Impact assessment, Lotus Foods earned an overall score of 110.6. The median score for ordinary businesses who complete the assessment is currently 50.9.
Per the B Corp, B Impact Assessment is a valuation considering that “business needs comprehensive, credible, comparable impact standards to support economic systems change.”
Used by more than 150,000 businesses, the B Impact Assessment is a digital tool that can help measure, manage, and improve positive impact performance for environment, communities, customers, suppliers, employees, and shareholders; receiving a minimum verified score of 80 points on the assessment is also the first step towards B Corp Certification.
From the B Corp website on the meaning of certification.
“B Corp Certification is a designation that a business is meeting high standards of verified performance, accountability, and transparency on factors from employee benefits and charitable giving to supply chain practices and input materials. In order to achieve certification, a company must:
Demonstrate high social and environmental performance by achieving a B Impact Assessment score of 80 or above and passing our risk review. Multinational corporations must also meet baseline requirement standards.
Make a legal commitment by changing their corporate governance structure to be accountable to all stakeholders, not just shareholders, and achieve benefit corporation status if available in their jurisdiction.
As leaders in the movement for economic systems change, B Corps reap remarkable benefits. They build trust with consumers, communities, and suppliers; attract and retain employees; and draw mission-aligned investors. As they are required to undergo the verification process every three years in order to recertify, B Corps are by definition also focused on continuous improvement, leading to their long-term resiliency.
B Corp Certification is holistic, not exclusively focused on a single social or environmental issue. And the process to achieve and maintain certification is rigorous and requires engaging teams and departments across your company. Taking company size and profile into account, verification involves documentation of your company’s business model and information about your operations, structure, and various work processes, as well as review of potential public complaints and possible site visits. Recertification confirms these standards continue to be met on an ongoing basis.”