While originally working in one of New Zealand’s biggest corporate law firms, Florence Van Dyke found herself wanting to embark on a more entrepreneurial journey, especially one where she could pursue her own passions and do work that reflected her values. That is why sustainability is a core value at Chia Sisters.
Van Dyke wanted to establish a company that honored the planet and held itself accountable. Chia Sisters does this work as documented through its impact report. This report addresses their strides toward UN SDG 8: Decent work and Economic Growth, UN SDG 12: Responsible Consumption and Production, UN SDG 13: Climate Action, and UN SDG 3: Good Health and Wellbeing.
Decent Work and Economic Growth
Chia Sisters hold their team at the forefront of their initiatives to contribute positively towards both people and the planet. All their workers are paid equal to or above the Living Wage which is the total amount necessary to provide for living requirements and basic necessities. This brand ethos extends outside of just Chia Sisters’ workers but to the brands they choose to partner with as well.
Responsible Consumption and Production
When Chia Sisters was originally founded in 2013, the decision was made to bottle all juices in glass. This was the first step of many taken by Van Dyke to reduce the company’s waste footprint. A few years later a precedent was set to make 50% of the store sales come from their products that are consumed from reusable materials such as the juice and sparkling water kegs. Additionally, by 2021, the use of single-use plastic was diminished by replacing warehouse transport packaging with reusable pallet wrap successfully leading to a reduction of “four cubic metric meters of plastic each year”.
Due to the beverage industry being one of the largest carbon emitters, Chia Sisters has an extensive strategy to help mitigate their negative climate impacts. This process involves measuring and analyzing emissions, then implementing practices to help minimize waste and harness renewable energy. After making these reductions, the remaining emissions are offset by 120% by contributing to the planting in the Rameka Forest. Amongst other initiatives, Chia Sisters founded “Businesses for Climate Action” to encourage the culmination of other companies to strive towards zero carbon. Chia Sisters recently saved 8 tons of hail-damaged pears from going to waste and furthermore established a line of juices made from fruits that otherwise would have been disposed of.
Good Health and Wellbeing
As Chia Sisters was created, the most nutritious drink in New Zealand was established. All drinks are derived from plants and contain a wide array of vitamins and essential nutrients with no artificial flavors or coloring.