Ecotrust Forest Management has been named one of the top 67 companies in the world for overall social and environmental impact by the nonprofit group B Lab. B Lab chose this “Best for the World” list from over 700 Certified B Corporations worldwide. With the release of the second annual “Best for the World” list, B Lab honors businesses that earned an overall score in the top 10% of all Certified B Corporations on the B Impact Assessment, a comprehensive assessment of a company’s impact on its workers, community, and the environment.
Ecotrust Forest Management, an Ecotrust subsidiary, manages 13,000 acres of Northwest forestland on behalf of investors and forestland owners to enhance forest health and productivity, and to produce a diverse array of forest products and services including timber, biomass, carbon, and improved habitat and water quality.
EFM seeks to capture a wide array of funding sources — New Markets Tax Credits, carbon credits, conservation easements, and restoration funding — to supplement private capital resources in the acquisition and management of forestland. The company also strives to create reliable jobs for local residents and opportunities for local communities.
“EFM is honored to be named among the top B Corps in the world. We are committed to demonstrating an alternative approach to managing forests in the region — one that can be financially competitive, while at the same time beneficial to the health and resilience of ecosystems and rural communities,” says Bettina von Hagen, CEO of Ecotrust Forest Management.
“We chose to become a B Corp because we believe that long-term stewardship of forestland is fundamental to our business model and that having strong social and environmental governance is critical to achieving our objectives,” von Hagen continues. “We share these common values with B Lab and appreciate their legitimacy as an independent third party in assessing environmental and social claims. We are also seeking investor and stakeholder communities that share our values, and the B Corp community meets that standard.”
Other highlighted companies include Roshan, Afghanistan’s leading telecommunications provider, One PacificCoast Bank, a pioneer triple-bottom-line community development bank, and Cooperative Home Care Associates, the nation’s largest worker-owned cooperative, providing high-quality home care services to elders and individuals living with disabilities. The “Best for the World” companies come from over 25 different industries and 20 countries. Thirty percent of honorees are based outside the United States, with 13 companies operating in emerging markets.
“A company’s revenue only tells half the story. Today’s most successful businesses must also create a positive social and environmental impact,” said Jay Coen Gilbert, co-founder of B Lab, the nonprofit organization that certifies B Corporations and governs the independent third party standard used to generate the comparable assessment of corporate impact. “These companies are competing to be not only the best in the world, but the best for the world.”
Each honored company is a Certified B Corporation, a new type of company using the power of business to solve social and environmental problems. They have met rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. Today there are over 700 certified B Corporations, across 60 industries and 25 countries, unified by the common goal to redefine success in business.
B Lab will release separate lists recognizing those companies that are “Best for the Environment,” “Best for the Community,” and “Best for Workers” throughout the coming year.