According to the Office of Advocacy of the U.S. Small Business Administration, small businesses account for 44% of economic activity. Today, we are witnessing small and medium-sized businesses take the lead in addressing our most critical global issue – climate change. Clever business owners recognize that consumers and clients respond favorably to companies that place value on people and the planet rather than just on their bottom line. Millennial business owners, specifically, are known to be more environmentally-conscious and are increasingly driving markets with their eco-conscious business habits. Small business owners are constantly seeking creative ways to invest their money in projects that will make a significant impact.
Running a business isn’t ever an easy task and has become even more challenging due to the current coronavirus pandemic. Businesses of all sizes have been hit hard as a result of social distancing and self-isolation, but the businesses that have been most heavily affected have been small businesses that rely on in-person transactions. A new survey from WalletHub shows that 87% of small business owners are struggling due to COVID-19.
With no precise ETA on when doors can reopen, many companies are at risk of closing forever; creating a loss not only for employees and their communities, but also for the American job market. Small businesses require our help now more than ever. Below we’re going to take a look at some of the small companies that are taking impressive steps towards sustainability and need our support right now.
The Wally Shop is a Brooklyn-based, zero-waste grocery delivery service offering local farmers market and organic bulk ingredients in 100% reusable and returnable packaging. With COVID-19 radically changing our day-to-day lives, their team has been working to provide people safe and sustainable access to groceries by offering organic, local ingredients without any packaging waste. They’re also donating $1 for every order placed to Feeding America and their COVID-19 fund. AND, as an attempt to help the most vulnerable members of our community; The Wally Shop is giving customers who are healthcare, emergency service workers, and seniors 65+ free shipping on their orders. You can support this inspiring small business by shopping their products online.
This business builds farms rooftops, green spaces, and promotes sustainable living and local ecology through food, education, and events. The company believes that social enterprise is a prime driving force of positive change and that businesses should be a nourishing part of their community. Sustainability is at the heart of their mission.
Brooklyn Grange hosts events and educational programming; designs, installs, and often maintains green spaces for clients all over the tri-state area. They also work hard to provide urban farming and green roof consulting services to clients worldwide. They are constantly innovating ways to create future cities that are greener and cleaner.
Like so many in New York City and across the globe, Brooklyn Grange has been working diligently to navigate the challenges that have come with Covid-19. From joining their CSA to supporting local farmers with Brooklyn Grange’s gift cards, there are many ways you can help support not only this business, but also local agriculture during this difficult time. Click here to learn more.
This is a fast-casual restaurant focused on offering vibrant, nutritional food and beverages to the community, with an emphasis on sustainable practices and produce sourced from local vendors. The sustainability goals for Charley St, with respect to the food system, include sourcing, education, and zero waste.
Some of Charley St’s key initiatives to action these goals include: allowing the soil to guide what is available and not be dictated by the consumer, creating plant-based proteins, using and in-store tap that builds a well in a developing country for every 10,000 bottles saved, and educative content created in their studio kitchen.
You can help Charley St stay open during this challenging time by ordering their healthy food online. Don’t worry, as part of their precautionary response to COVID-19, all delivery couriers have been advised to commit to contact-less delivery.
Glenn Avenue Soap Company uses completely natural ingredients in all of their products, which are also made using environmentally-friendly practices. Whether online or in-person at their Craft Soaphouse, you can purchase anything from all-natural shaving cream and body butter to bath bombs and beer soaps. You can continue to support this small business by shopping online or if you live in the area, through curbside pickup.
Glean is a shop celebrating all things creatively repurposed where you can find quirky objects that are handcrafted, mostly local, one-of-a-kind, and created with a purpose to lighten our impact on the environment. The idea behind this company is to make everyone think about the earth and how each action we take can affect the world around us. They are currently closed as a precautionary measure to the COVID-19 pandemic, but are still accepting and shipping orders online.
Through waste reduction advocacy and the distribution of their “long-lasting, high-quality reusable bags,” ChicoBag seeks to make single-use plastics a thing of the past. As a Certified B Corporation, ChicoBag sticks by its values of equal partnerships that benefit both people and the environment, striving to become zero waste, paying it forward with reusable bag donation, and giving back via local park cleanups or serving meals to those in need. They’ve saved an estimated 779 million plastic bags from entering the waste stream.
Help this company stay afloat AND reduce your plastic use by shopping their products online.
Everyone Can Help
The size of the market opportunities is driving small businesses to engage in environmental sustainability, as are concerns about survival and long term success. In addition to improving profits, reducing costs, and militating against risk, engaging in sustainability provides opportunities for collaboration and innovation. These are only a handful of companies that are working to create a brighter future for our planet. No matter where in the world you are, it’s important to support such businesses, especially during the pandemic.
Visit kiwienergy.us to learn about how Kiwi Energy is working to create a more sustainable future.