The Rainforest Company is a Berlin-based startup, which has been revolutionizing the vegan and organic food markets with its innovative açaí products made from raw materials sourced directly, fairly and sustainably from smallholder farmers in the Amazon rainforest.
Taking climate action is no longer just an option or obligation for businesses. It is our moral imperative. This is the belief that compelled us at The Rainforest Company to commit ourselves to the Four Principles of Nature-Based Solutions.
Since our inception in 2017, The Rainforest Company has had a clear mission: To save the rainforest. An audacious mission like this commands that your business adheres to the highest social and environmental standards. Starting from the business model itself.
We develop and market açaí products using raw materials sourced from the Amazon rainforest in Brazil. We chose the açaí berry not only because it is delicious and trendy, but also because it is a Non-Timber Forest Product which can be harvested without disrupting the forest ecosystem.
The smallholder farmers we work with practice traditional agroforestry techniques in order to harvest the açaí berries we use in our products. By having a direct relationship with our farmers, we are able to negotiate fair terms of trade: We currently compensate our farmers at 30% above the average market rate in order to ensure that working with us is more profitable than cultivating crops like soy which are aggressively imposed through government subsidies backed by Brazil’s powerful agricultural lobby.
Sourcing our raw materials in this manner allowed us to minimize our environmental footprint. And then comes packaging and transportation. A recent Life Cycle Analysis of our products revealed that they perform better than 50% of the products on the market in terms of carbon emissions. But the goal is carbon neutrality. The Rainforest Company is, and will always strive to be, a carbon neutral company. We offset our emissions by planting trees. Not just anywhere – we plant them in the State of Para – which is one of the most deforested areas in Brazil’s Legal Amazon (DETER).
But with an imminent climate emergency, we have to ask ourselves: Is it enough to do the bare minimum? The answer is a resounding no.
We decided that the best way to honor our mission to save the rainforest is by supporting local communities through socioenvironmental projects which focus on reforestation as well as sustainable livelihood generation. We donate 5 cents from every product sold to grassroots NGOs who are our allies in developing and executing these projects.
True allies are responsive, especially in times of crisis. When we saw the devastation being wreaked by COVID-19 on forest communities in Brazil, we pivoted our efforts into providing relief to remote communities who have received neither the necessary information nor the support from their government to safely isolate and protect themselves.
We pride ourselves in being a sustainable business. But sustainability is not just the means to a (profitable) end for us. Rather, it has been a natural consequence of feeling a strong sense of responsibility towards all our stakeholders: Be it the farmers who harvest our açaí or customers and business partners who put their trust in us or Mother Nature herself. Therefore, we The Rainforest Company, wholeheartedly embrace and promise to uphold the Four Principles of Nature-Based Solutions.