Companies With a Conscience

We are long time advocates of sustainable and reponsible sourcing. In 1992, early in our business, we were included in the book Companies with a Conscience in the chapter 'The Additional Enlightened': 

"Stefan Schinzinger and Sally Kellman are partners in two sister businesses that import and distribute products benefitting international environmental and labor causes. The San Francisco Hat Company, based in Berkeley, California, sells a fedora called the Rain Forest Hat made of palm tree trimmings from Brazil; for every hat purchased the manufacturer buys one acre of threatened rain-forest land. This is one of several hats the company sells to such retailers as Barney's New York, Nordstroms, I. Magnin and the Nature Company. Their other business, the Tagua Button Company, imports buttons made of nuts from palm trees and last year sold a million pieces in the United States. 

By providing a market for the trees' seeds, the company is creating a reason to save the trees instead of cutting them down. In addition, it employs Brazilian residents who have established cottage industries producing both the hats and the buttons. The pair's work has been recognized by a UN delegation. With only four full-time employees in the United States, these two sister companies have achieved moderate sales increases for the past five years, with annual sales reaching $500,000."