1 Jun

Alter Eco: Nourishing Foodie, Farmer, and Field

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Globalization is the integration of people, ideas, and products around the world. With today’s technology we can speak and share ideas with someone on the other side of the world in an instant and deliver goods within a week. This has allowed our world to advance at an extremely high rate. Not only are good things sped up, but bad things such as exploitation happen faster as well.

When the world is easy to navigate, it makes items such as food more accessible. The company Alter Eco cares about the farmers, the transporters, and the environment. Alter Eco sells food that fits into three requirements: socially just, environmentally responsible, and reliably delicious. These three components make up their definition of sustainable practices. This company has been certified as a B Corporation. Everything that they sell is Fair Trade Certified, Non-GMO & Organic, has Compostable packaging, and Carbon Insetting.

alter eco sustainability

Alter Eco has committed to a zero impact production. This means that they reduce their carbon footprint as much as possible, then “inset,” which is planting trees to make up for the carbon used. The difference between insetting and offsetting is that insetting is “the handling of carbon compensation into the commercial dynamics of the company” instead of at some distant location. They also have compostable packaging for all of their products. This minimizes the amount of packaging in landfills, and allows the packages to be used as soil once they have completed the composting cycle. The third way that they are environmentally responsible is by growing organic food, and making sure that it is endemic. This means that the food is local to where it is being grown; this can help make growing the crop easier.  Alter eco has specialists to assist and train member farmers in sustainable methods.

All of Alter Eco’s food is Fair Trade Certified by multiple different certifiers. They make sure that the producers are being paid enough support sustainable production, living conditions, and a premium to support the growth and advancement of the co-ops and their communities. Alter Eco knows each of their venders personally, and makes sure to aid with technical assistance, and have community engagement. Their third socially just requirement is to have gender equality. They support the empowerment of women to ensure that there is gender justice.

The last aspect to sustainability is to be reliably delicious. The products are organic, whole, and minimally processed. Alter Eco is creating a business where globalization is being used the right way. Every aspect of this process is being thought through, and no one is left without the proper care that they should have.

Mathieu Senard, co-founder and co-CEO Alter Eco, emphasizes that their “mission goes beyond making delicious and good-for-you foods to positively impacting the lives of those we work with and the environment.” When asked why they sell the products that they do, he explained that “these categories are common areas where we believe Fair Trade and organic farming practices can make a real impact on people and the plant.”

Written by Elise Mazur, June 1st, 2015

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