1% FOR THE PLANET
Founded by Yvon Chouinard and Craig Mathews, 1% for the Planet is a globally recognized organization that uses business and individual memberships to make a positive impact via donations through highly vetted nonprofit partners.
What is it?
Businesses with this membership commit to giving 1% of their gross sales each year to approved nonprofit partners. Individuals with a membership donate 1% of their salary to these approved partners via monetary donations and/or volunteer support. Entire businesses, brands, product lines, and individuals can become a member. Such business members are Patagonia, Maine Beer Company, Pukka Herbs, and, our positive impact partner, Jelt. A brand that subscribes to this membership is EnviroKidz, a Nature’s Path brand. The Honest Tea glass line is an example of a product line with a membership to 1% for the Planet. In order to meet membership requirements, at least half of the business members’ commitment must be met through monetary donations. However, business members have the option of donating up to a quarter of their commitment in the form of employee volunteer time and/or in-kind product or service donations every year. An additional quarter of the business members’ donation can come through approved promotional support. It is also completely acceptable for members to fulfill their entire 1% commitment through monetary donations. There is no requirement to support nonprofits via in-kind donations or promotional support. 1% for the Planet certified giving on an annual basis by confirming each business member’s gross sales and reviewing donation receipts made to approved nonprofit partners. This third-party annual certification process provides credibility to the members’ commitment.
Why does it matter?
From a business perspective, use of the 1% for the Planet logo, collateral and brand messaging is an effective way to communicate their commitment to giving back to environmental causes. Consumers are more likely to trust companies’ environmental claims when they are backed up by globally recognized certifications. With the majority of people saying that they are willing to pay more for products and services from companies committed to positive social and environmental impact, and the increase in interest about corporate social responsibility initiatives, becoming a member of this organization can benefit the business as a whole while changing the industry’s priorities to become more socially and environmentally responsible. Besides providing forward-facing benefits, the annual certification process gives businesses and individual members a scheduled time to assess the impact of their strategic giving.
Subscribing to a membership at an organization like 1% for the Planet is a change to commit to doing better with the benefit of the recognition that comes along with receiving a certification from a respected organization.