Meet first-hand the green pioneers in San Francisco’s new hotbed of social and sustainable enterprise! The impact-driven economy has jettisoned past idealistic theory to become a true growth industry.
In a single day, leading social entrepreneurs share how they’ve redefined success as well as their innovations in making conscientious capitalism work locally and internationally. From promising start-ups to well-established businesses, meet the makers of consciously sourced products like chocolates, seafood, and cleaning products — and shake hands with the financiers paving the impact money trail!
Some Suggested Stops
New Resource Bank
New Resource Bank is a triple-bottom-line bank serving values-driven businesses and nonprofits that are building a more sustainable world. New Resource Bank aims to have impact in environmental protection, health & wellness, education & community empowerment, and sustainable commerce.
GreenCitizen provides pickup services for businesses around the SF Bay Area and a convenient drop off location for consumers at its Burlingame Education EcoCenter.
GreenCitizen is 100% self-sustaining, without government funding or donations. Revenues generated by 10% of the newer recycled computers and electronics covers the company’s operational expenses and the proper disposal of older electronics. Since inception, GreenCitizen saved over 25 million pounds of electronics from local landfills and global dumps. It has extended the life of over 230,000 reusable computers and electronics, as well as servicing over 250,000 consumers and 25,000 businesses in the San Francisco Bay Area.
By donating 10% of its staff time to refurbishing computers and electronics that are 2012 or newer for local public schools, GreenCitizen works to bridge the digital divide between public school students and their counterparts in well-funded private schools. This program offers deep discounts toward purchasing refurbished computers and electronic equipment. It also enables public schools with limited IT budgets, to upgrade aging computers and electronics, providing higher quality of education to their students.
From artisan chocolate to heirloom quinoa, Alter Eco is a pioneer of consciously sourced and packaged, globally crafted, organic foods. All Alter Eco products are USDA Certified Organic, Fair Trade Certified, Carbon Neutral Certified, Non-GMO Project Verified and Certified Gluten-Free.
Small-scale farmers are given outlets for their crops and a brand in highly competitive marketplaces. Additionally, Alter Eco is working towards 100% compostable packaging, and insetting with large-scale reforestation programs in their cooperatives.
RSF Social Finance
RSF Social Finance is a financial services organization that has formed a growing community of motivated, values-driven investors, donors and entrepreneurs. RSF offers investing, lending and giving services to those who are committed to generating positive social and environmental impact.
Established in 2007, Luscious Garage is a woman-owned and operated company that specializes in hybrid auto repair and applies the “hybrid” paradigm to everything it does: minimizing environmental impact, promoting advanced technology, and working together with customers to meet their needs.
Founded in 2004, CleanFish is a company that brings together artisan producers – both fishermen and farmers – and champion them in the marketplace under transparent brands. They ensure their producers meet stringent guidelines that go above and beyond the current market standards for sustainable seafood.
CleanWell, LLC is a company that sells thyme-based antimicrobial products, from household disinfectants to hand soap. Their botanical formula kills 99.9% of germs without the use of harsh chemicals. CleanWell’s products are manufactured in the US and certified cruelty free by PETA.
d.light is a global leader in solar-powered solutions for the two billion people in the developing world without access to reliable energy. They are the largest distributed solar lighting brand for households and small businesses in off-grid communities. Their mission is to make clean energy products universally available and affordable.
Grove Collaborative’s mission is to shrink the environmental footprint of the American household by making sustainable products the most convenient option for busy consumers. They offer a curated selection of natural household and personal care products that are effective, sustainable, and well-designed.
Indosole is on the mission to become the most responsible footwear company in the world by delivering high quality enviro footwear for travel, adventure and lifestyle. Indosole repurposes discarded tires into footwear soles. So far, they have prevented over 30,000 tires from ending up in landfills.
Founded in 2000 and headquartered in San Francisco, Method is the pioneer of premium planet-friendly and design-driven home, fabric and personal care products formulated with naturally derived, biodegradable ingredients.
Soma designs and produces eco-friendly water filtration systems. Their sustainable water filters are made from biodegradable materials rather than petroleum-based plastics. Through charitable partnerships, Soma donates clean drinking water to people in need with every filter sold.
Lunch Stops May Include
Thirsty Bear Organic Brewery
ThirstyBear Organic Brewery is the first and only brewery in San Francisco to brew certified organic beer and become a certified Green Business. Born out of Founding Brewmaster Ron Silberstein’s longstanding commitment to support sustainable agriculture, ThirstyBear sources its ingredients from the world’s most renowned malt houses and premier West Coast organic hop farms to distinctly pair their craft beers with its exquisite Spanish cuisine.
Dine in style at the San Francisco Ferry Building, the primal portal of the city famous for its dramatic clock tower that has been the icon of San Francisco waterfront for more than a 100 years. From Vietnamese street food to oyster bars, handmade empanadas to good old cheeseburgers, and weekly farmers markets, Ferry Building’s Marketplace has something for everybody.
A San Francisco restaurant and bar launched in 2016 that champions progressive farming. Agriculture has the potential to reverse climate change and their goal is to serve great food and drinks that are part of a positive food system. Through their Perennial Farming Initiative, they support farmers and ranchers who employ regenerative practices including serving bread made with perennial grains, butchering carbon ranched meat and operating an aquaponic greenhouse.
The Market is not just a grocery store but a community working to bring people together to enjoy a variety of high-quality locally-sourced foods and freshly prepared meals. They work with local farmers and feature the best California cuisine with seasonal ingredients. Home to a dozen individual food vendors serving tacos, tapas, sandwiches, sushi, salads, Malaysian food, pizza, chocolate, coffee, and even a bar! Located in the Twitter building, you can take your food outside and eat around a fire pit in the courtyard.
The Plant grew out of a desire to make it easy and affordable to eat delicious healthy organic food. Their mission is to promote the wellbeing of people and the planet, and provide an avenue to support healthy choices and sustainable practices. Everything the café serves is made with exclusively 100% organic and local ingredients. The produce is seasonal from around the bay area, often picked only days before being served. The Plant’s menu is diverse, comprised largely of contemporary California cuisine and Asian inspired flavors.