FAIRBORN — Fifty5 Rivers Cold Brew has joined 229 other brands in becoming Climate Neutral Certified, a distinction offered to a group of businesses that have measured and offset their 2020 carbon emissions.
Climate Neutral’s certification is based on internationally recognized standards of carbon measurement, neutrality, and offsetting. Each brand must measure their greenhouse gas emissions along their entire supply chain for the prior calendar year. Brands then buy verified “carbon credits” to offset their entire footprint. These credits are directly invested into international sustainability projects such as forest conservation, renewable energy, and carbon capture technologies. Finally, companies commit to a plan to cut future emissions within a 12-24 month timeline, reporting progress on those plans annually. All of the brand’s data is publicly available on Climate Neutral’s website. The process is repeated annually when companies must re-certify.
“Fifty5 Rivers Cold Brew is proud to be Climate Neutral Certified, as it ties directly to one of our core company values: respect. Respecting the environment is a key driver in our business decisions and showcasing this through offsetting our 54 metric tons carbon dioxide footprint from last year was an easy decision,” James Mowery, president of Fifty5 Rivers Cold Brew, said in a release.
Taking the rigorous steps to become certified wasn’t a huge jump for the Mowerys, as they had started their business with sustainability in mind. Last week, Fifty5 Rivers launched their delivery service, and the initiative has inspired certain elements of it.
“It wasn’t a big change, but since we came across [Climate Neutral], we found further things to develop,” Lynne Mowery said. “We now have gel packs that are environment-friendly and can be used as plant food. The delivery bags themselves are also reusable.”
The Mowerys began the process in September, becoming a committed company in December of 2020. The official process starts in January and ends on Earth Day with certification.
“Fifty5 Rivers Cold Brew and our other Climate Neutral Certified brands are leading the global shift to a net-zero economy by doing what all companies should be doing immediately: measuring, offsetting, and reducing their carbon emissions,”Climate Neutral CEO Austin Whitman said. “Our label helps consumers identify these brands. It’s a recognizable and trusted symbol that turns everyday purchases into meaningfully positive climate action.”
Due to their size, Fifty5 Rivers’ offset credits became pooled with other businesses to fund one particular project: a stove project in Uganda. Problems with deforestation and coal use in Uganda, as well as health problems resulting from inefficient indoor stoves, led to a need for better energy-efficient cooktops.
Climate Neutral currently has 230 brands that are part of its program, most of which are online only. Fifty5 Rivers is one of only a few brick and mortar brands in Ohio, among both small and large businesses.
The Mowerys’ plans for sustainability going forward include more long term projects, including sourcing their packaging and labels, and adding solar panels to the building.
”Energy is big thing. Everything we’ve done, we’ve thought about the environment. This is a natural step for us,” Lynne said. “We did so much when we came in, but we want to continue that effort.”
Climate Neutral’s mission is for small businesses and large businesses alike. Not only is it an investment into sustainability around the world, but it’s an opportunity to demonstrate value to customers, the Mowerys said.
I do think consumers are going to start paying attention to that,” Lynne Mowery said. “Consumers are becoming more conscious of where their money is going. To see companies putting in that effort, it speaks volumes.”
Reach London Bishop at 937-502-4532 or follow @LBishopFDH on Twitter.