PHOTO: LEANDRO CHAVIRA
The path to success is never the exact same route for any two companies, but there are lessons we can learn from each business that has “made it”—even the big conventional guys like Coke and Nike. Yes, I know the
thought may make many in the organic industry raise their brow (and I did
at first, too). However, while these corporate giants have certainly not al-
ways been known as role models for sustainability, they have been successful
at creating a name that resonates with millions of con-
sumers. What if we were to combine this kind of success
with sustainable, socially-responsible business practices?
Think of all the land that would be converted to organic
and all the happy, healthy farmers there would be!
In this issue’s cover story on “Iconic Entrepreneur-
ship,” the experts at Christie Communications present
key insights from former Coca-Cola marketing VP,
One com pany on the Iconic Freeway is Organic Valley—now the largest
natural foods brand. In this issue’s Dialogue, I had the opportunity to chat
with the cooperative’s chief marking executive, Theresa Marquez, about
everything from the next generation of organic to feeding the world. With
the heart of an activist and the skill of a seasoned marketer, our industry
has much we could learn from this amazing woman.
Another very inspiring story is that of Equal Exchange. Its democratic,
worker-owned cooperative model seems almost too idealistic to work, yet
the company has been able to grow to $36 million without ever diverting
from its mission. Equal Exchange’s story is so compelling it makes me want
to eat more fair trade, organic chocolate to help them on their mission.
What a great way to do good!
This whole idea of supporting those who are “doing good” is one of the
keys to a new kind of investment strategy that is being adopted by many in
the organic industry—“Slow Money.” The goal of the Slow Money Alliance
is to get 1 million people to invest 1 percent of their income in local or
small farmers and food entrepreneurs (like most of our readers). In
Managing, the founder of this movement (and author of the book on the
subject), Woody Tash, explains how this concept can be used to grow a mission-driven business. This concept will change the way you go about raising
Whether it’s learning marketing secrets from conventional iconic
brands, or exploring unconventional capital models or utopian business
structures—the path to success in the organic industry is very individualized. It’s a path that must be guided by your company’s mission at all times.
We hope with each issue we can help bring you closer and closer to your
definition of success.
Chief Executive Officer Don Meeker
Publisher Stacy Atchison
Advertising Manager Bobby Meeker
Editorial Director Kathryn Schuett
Art Director Craig Van Wechel
Circulation Manager Andrea Karges
Administrative Manager Allison Demmert
Publishing Office 1945 W. Mountain St.
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Stacy Atchison 424.298.8542
Bobby Meeker 818.842.2829
Adam Haas 407.601.5440
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Organically Yours, O r
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