As part of our Earth Day celebrations this weekend we donated couple of thousand dollars towards making our Finger Lakes region even more pristine. Thanks to our partner, Finger Lakes Land Trust and most importantly you our customers who made this possible!
As some of you know we are members of 1% for the Planet. This fine organization was started in 2002 by Patagonia founder, Yvon Chouinard and Craig Mathews from Blue Ribbon Flies. The idea behind it was that businesses would donate 1% for their sale (not profit) to a non-profit of their choice. These non-profits are normally vetted by 1% and work in diverse fields from social justice to environment.
Kurt Anderson from Finger Lakes Land Trust receiving a check from Niraj Lama, owner Happy Earth Tea.
The primary job of Finger Lakes Land Trust is to secure private lands in the Finger Lakes Region and preserve it for posterity. No large development is allowed to take place in these lands which are also open for public to enjoy. The Trust is also involved in protecting water catchment areas that feed into the Finger Lakes, some of which have been struggling with algae blooms due to excessive run offs of fertilizers from farms and other private lands. They also maintain many trails in the area and encourage people to outdoor activities with their highly informative maps and apps.
Kurt Anderson talking about FLLT's work to Happy Earth Tea customers.
Those of who do not live in this region, Finger Lakes is a scenic area in upstate New York that is made up of nearly 11 lakes. These glacial lakes are surrounded by rolling hills making for picture postcard vistas. The region is primarily agricultural, with now many vineyards dotting the area. It is also home of Cornell University and just outside its northern border sits our city of Rochester.
We have been donating to FLLT through 1% for the Planet for the last two years. This year we are afraid we are not making any donation to Ama Foundation in Nepal that we were supporting. Although the Foundation continue to do their great work we have decided to work with more "local" non profits.
Aside from our annual donation, some of our daily steps to make this earth a better place include - sourcing organic teas, fair trade where possible, use packaging with minimal waste, paper straws, shopping bags using recyled paper, recycle whatever possible, and customer incentive for using their own cups at the tea bar for teas-to-go. If you have any suggestions please feel free to email us or write in the comments below.