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An Inquiry into Sustainable Businesses

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Sustainability has evolved into an integral element of development. As cities, countries, and businesses enter the global market, their practices are being examined through a sustainable lens. When cities, states, and businesses engage in trade with other states or businesses there is a direct impact on the environment.

The prominent environmental movement has directed special focus on consumerism, favoring in some cases “green consumerism.” Opting to buy products from more “environmentally friendly” companies, consumers show preference to green products that more expensive because it is seen as a trend. Consumers are looking for labels such as organic, cruelty free and fair trade. Brands use these as a tactic for marketing their product. Some people criticize this “label phenomena,” as merely a distraction or better yet, greenwashing, consumption itself entails environmental degradation. Most products are made from non-biodegradable material, which means it is a polluting source. Industry overproduces food, while there are 41 million American facing hunger. This is the case for all industry, not just the food industry, there is a surplus of commodities. Businesses try and tackle these issues trying to fulfill requirements that will allow them to obtain these certifications that merit labels. AB Corporationis a private certification issued to for-profit companies through B lab, a global non-profit organization, companies must meet requirements in order to obtain the label. The B Impact Assessment evaluates how your company’s operations and business model impacts your workers, community, environment, and customers.

There are a wide range of sustainable businesses, sustainability is more of an encompassing term that not only examines the impacts on the environment but recognizes human and animal treatment as part of environmental welfare. Sustainability must be well-equipped with salient labor practices and non-harming extraction practices. Patagonia is seen as a leader amongst sustainable businesses. Patagonia is an outdoor wear clothing company whose mission statement is to “build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis. According to Good on You, a website dedicated to scoring businesses on a scale from terrible to great. Their criteria is based on environmental, labor, and animal welfare evaluating its ethics. Patagonia scores good, suggesting “to build on that great work we recommend that Patagonia looks at setting and publishing more concrete water and carbon targets, and keep pushing to implement its plans to pay all workers in the supply chain a living wage.”

American Capital Financial Group and Juan Carlos Zurita as President seeks to build with more sustainable businesses and craft a criterion, in order to join the movement of combating climate change. A criterion that will examine a company’s practices and evaluate its effects on their workers, customers, and environment.

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