Home Coffee making How you can help make a difference in the world, one coffee at a time

How you can help make a difference in the world, one coffee at a time


Does your morning Nespresso taste even better than usual today? Maybe it’s the good vibes that come with the company’s new B Corp certification.

The global coffee company that pioneered portioned coffee has joined this growing international movement of companies, such as Stuff, to use their economic power as a force for good.

Stefan Vermeulen, Country Manager of Nespresso New Zealand, says he is proud, excited and honored that the company has joined the B Corp movement. “For 30 years we’ve been making the best coffee, and it’s always been important to us that it’s a meaningful cup of coffee,” he says. “We are a company that cares about communities, climate and circularity, and this is a continuation of that commitment.”

What is the B Corp certification?

When you see the B Corp logo on a product or service, you know the company is using the power of business to build a more inclusive, equitable and sustainable world.

To achieve B Corp certification, members must prove to B Lab (the non-profit organization that confers the certification) that they care about social and environmental purpose as much as profit – and that they act in result. They aim to have a positive impact on the environment and on their employees, partners, customers and communities.

Globally, more than 5,000 companies have joined the B Corp movement, and you too can be part of this change by choosing products and services bearing the B Corp logo.

What does this mean for Nespresso?

Stefan explains that B Corp certification validates policies and practices that are already deeply embedded in Nespresso’s corporate culture. “It’s an external confirmation of an internal company philosophy that every Nespresso employee is very aware of and proud of,” he says.

Years ago, Nespresso joined forces with partners such as Rainforest Alliance, TechnoServe and FairTrade to review and improve its practices. Its AAA Sustainable Quality™ program was launched in 2003 in collaboration with the Rainforest Alliance to integrate sustainable practices into coffee farms and improve the lives of farmers and their communities. The company has also entered into a strategic alliance with Fairtrade to ensure that all actors in its supply chain are treated fairly and paid appropriately.

All of this aligns closely with B Corp’s standards of social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability, which are based on strict criteria for governance, treatment of workers, customers and the community, and Environmental Protection.

What does this mean for Kiwi coffee lovers?

Kiwi coffee drinkers can enjoy their morning Nespresso even more, knowing that no worker has been taken advantage of and no environment has been destroyed in the process of making their morning caffeine fix.

“In the 10 years that Nespresso has been in New Zealand, we have learned very quickly that caring about people, communities and the environment is extremely important to Kiwis and highly valued by them,” says Stefan.

Why is B Corp certification important for Nespresso?

Stefan says it was obvious for Nespresso to join the B Corp movement, given that over the past three decades the company had already independently implemented so many policies and programs aligned with B Corp goals. Corp. “It’s a natural progression from what we’re working on through our Positive Cup program,” he says.

What is the program of the Positive Cup?

Nespresso’s Positive Cup program is based on three pillars: caring for communities, climate action and circularity.

“When it comes to caring for communities, Nespresso has a huge advantage as we control our entire value chain,” says Stefan. “This means we are making a real difference in the lives of the over 120,000 farmers who participate in our AAA Sustainable Agriculture Program and supply our coffee beans.”

The second pillar is climate protection. “Here in New Zealand, we achieved carbon neutrality in October last year,” says Stefan, “so we are well on our way to net zero by 2030.”

The third pillar concerns circularity, with Nespresso’s global recycling program as its centerpiece.

How does the recycling program work?

Nespresso drinkers are encouraged to return their used capsules for reuse. Aluminum is recycled in addition to capsules and other items, such as bicycles and ladders. Coffee grounds are composted and used as fertilizer in places like vineyards and kiwi fruit orchards.

“Our recycling program has been hugely successful and we are constantly striving to improve it,” says Stefan. “We encourage Kiwis to visit our website to find out how to join the program.”

What are your next steps under B Corp?

B Corp companies are assessed every three years to verify that they continue to meet the movement’s rigorous verified standards.

Stefan says joining the B Corp movement is a catalyst for action faster. “We crossed the starting line but now the real marathon begins. We are committed to our roadmap and the goals we have set ourselves.

“We are proud to have joined a movement of like-minded companies and we look forward to leading this movement and learning from it. This encourages us to accelerate our ambition to be a force for good as a coffee company.

Starting your day with a coffee created with care for people and the planet is a step towards a better future. To learn more about B Corp certification, visit nespresso.com and if you’re not already recycling your coffee capsules, find out how here.