Guide to Giving
NEWS  | 

B-Corp Certification Expands

Wednesday, 31st October 2012 at 10:44 am
Staff Reporter
Global ice-cream chain Ben and Jerry’s has become the first wholly-owned subsidiary to gain a B Corp certification - a mechanism to publically declare its values-led practices.

Wednesday, 31st October 2012
at 10:44 am
Staff Reporter



B-Corp Certification Expands
Wednesday, 31st October 2012 at 10:44 am

Global ice-cream chain Ben and Jerry’s has become the first wholly-owned subsidiary to gain a B Corp certification – a mechanism to publically declare its values-led practices.

Parent company Unilever purchased the American chain 12 years ago. At the time of the acquisition an independent board of directors was established who supported the cause for the company to gain B Corp certification.

“Becoming a Certified B Corp is an important step, not only because it re-affirms our deep commitment to values-led business practices, but also because it affirms how Ben & Jerry’s and Unilever work together to advance our social mission,” Ben & Jerry’s Board Chair Jeff Furman said.

Certified B Corporations are a new type of corporation that uses the power of business to solve social and environmental problems.

In Australia there are currently two certified B Corporations, Melbourne-based impact-investment firm Small Giants and project management consultancy company The Projection Room.

Ben & Jerry’s director of social mission Rob Michalak said that the B Corp community is made up of organisations that have high standards that they can use to improve their performance over time.

“We want to constantly challenge ourselves to be better,” he said.

In 2011, parent company Unilever self-assessed as a B+ organisation based on the Global Reporting Initiative's (GRI) G3 Sustainability Reporting Guidelines. In April this year they produced their inaugural Unilever Sustainable Living Plan Progress Report, outlining their performance against targets during 2011.

Co-founder of the certification organisation, B Lab, Jay Coen Gilbert said that meeting the standards to become a Certified B Corp shows that Ben & Jerry’s cares about verified and transparent performance.

To earn its B Corp certification, the company has made its full B Impact Assessment available here.

Highlights of the report are:

Governance: Has an independent Company Board that's empowered to protect and defend Ben & Jerry's Social Mission Priorities; Produces an annual audited Social and Environmental Assessment Report (SEAR) detailing its mission-related performance

Workers: The lowest paid hourly worker receives 46% above the living wage; Offers supplemental benefits to employees, including health & wellness program, counseling services, community garden, and free product

Community: Contributed >5,000 hours of community service; >40% of board and management are from underrepresented populations; 45% of COGS goes towards investing and supporting small scale suppliers through the Caring Dairy program; Donated >5% of profits to charity

Environment: 100% of U.S. pint containers made with FSC Certified paperboard; Monitors emissions and has specific emissions reduction targets; Monitors water usage and increased % of water recycled on-site bi-annually; Offset >50% of emissions with certified carbon offsets

Ben & Jerry’s was created in Vermont, United States and wholly-owned subsidiary of Unilever. According to the company it operates on a three-part Mission Statement based on product quality, economic reward and community commitment. Contributions made via the employee-led Ben & Jerry’s Foundation in 2011 totaled US$1.98 million.

The ice-cream chain is found in 26 countries around the world, including Australia.



Brennan IT helps not-for-profit (NFP) organisations drive gr...

Brennan IT

HLB Mann Judd is a specialist Accounting and Advisory firm t...

HLB Mann Judd


Helping the helpers fund their mission…...

FrontStream Pty Ltd (FrontStream AsiaPacific)

More Suppliers


Youth Action Group Calls on Young Australians to Get Involved in Social Issues

Luke Michael

Monday, 25th September 2017 at 11:14 am

Raizing the Profile of Asthma

Wendy Williams

Monday, 25th September 2017 at 8:46 am

Susan Pascoe Appointed Head of Newly Formed Community Directors Council

Luke Michael

Friday, 22nd September 2017 at 5:21 pm

Recruitment Expert Says NFPs Need Thorough Process to Hire Honest Candidates

Luke Michael

Friday, 22nd September 2017 at 4:50 pm


Moves to Stop Volunteering at Overseas Orphanages

Luke Michael

Wednesday, 13th September 2017 at 1:54 pm

Future Uncertain for Disability Organisations Following Funding Cuts

Wendy Williams

Tuesday, 19th September 2017 at 8:29 am

Majority of NFPs Are Not Believed to be Well-Run, According to New Survey

Luke Michael

Tuesday, 12th September 2017 at 4:14 pm

More Australians Are Giving Time Not Money

Wendy Williams

Monday, 11th September 2017 at 5:07 pm

Write a Reply or Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Guide to Giving
pba inverse logo
Subscribe Twitter Facebook

The social sector's most essential news coverage. Delivered free to your inbox every Tuesday and Thursday morning.

You have Successfully Subscribed!