Guayakí (company)

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Guayakí
TypePrivate
IndustryBeverage, organic products
Founded1996
FoundersAlex Pryor, David Karr
HeadquartersSebastopol, California
Area served
United States, Canada
Key people
Stefan Kozak, CEO
ProductsYerba mate, beverages, energy shots, energy drinks
Websitewww.guayaki.com

Guayakí Sustainable Rainforest Products, Inc., more commonly known as Guayakí, is an organic beverage company specializing in yerba mate products based in Sebastopol, California.[1] In addition to offering loose-leaf yerba mate, Guayakí also sells canned as well as carbonated yerba mate drinks, and energy shots. Guayakí receives American-nationwide distribution to approximately 10,000 stores,[2][3] primarily through organic and health-oriented grocery stores such as Whole Foods among other retailers, as well as through online channels.[4]

About[edit]

Guayakí was founded in 1996 as a CalPoly San Luis Obispo senior project by Alex Pryor and David Karr.[5]

In 2018 Guayakí's mission was, in part, to "steward and restore 200,000 acres of rainforest and create over 1,000 living-wage jobs by 2020" in the Atlantic Forest through their own "Market Driven Restoration" model, the idea that imperialism and colonialism as a result of the market for products from less-developed countries can be combatted using the market itself.[6][7]

The name Guayakí comes from the Indigenous Aché people of Paraguay, who are ancestral consumers of the mate plant. In the interest of social and environmental responsibility, the company works with the Aché people to conserve the rainforest habitat they dwell in and harvest mate. Guayakí pays the community for the use of its name.[8]

Guayakí is California's first B Corporation,[9][10] certified organic by USDA Organic; Additionally, the company is also certified fair trade by IMO and is a member of Fair Trade Federation, and the first yerba mate company to achieve biodynamic certification.[11]

In April, 2021, the brand announced Stefan Kozak will step in as the new CEO of the company. Kozak is the former CEO of Red Bull North America.[12]

Criticisms[edit]

Despite its commitment to sustainability and transformative commodity chains, the company has received some academic criticism for the use of "problematic" marketing for the beverage.[13]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Guayakí Pioneers Market-Driven Restoration Business Model - RSF Social Finance". RSF Social Finance. August 27, 2012. Retrieved June 5, 2018.
  2. ^ "Small Biz Makeover: Guayaki Tea's Big Challenge". Newsweek. November 24, 2009. Retrieved June 5, 2018.
  3. ^ "Guayakí Self-Distribution Model Rolls On". BevNET.com. October 31, 2019. Retrieved February 21, 2020.
  4. ^ Latif, Roy. "Sparkling Growth: 6 Questions with David Karr of Guayaki". BEVNET. Retrieved June 1, 2015.
  5. ^ Weinfeld, David. "Our Vision". Guayakí Yerba Mate. Retrieved March 23, 2021.
  6. ^ "100 Years of Sun: Regenerative Agriculture". 100 Years of Sun: Regenerative Agriculture. Retrieved June 5, 2018.
  7. ^ "Restoring the Rainforest: Guayakí Brews Environmental and Social Change - KWHS". KWHS. March 12, 2013. Retrieved June 5, 2018.
  8. ^ Brewster Boyd, Nina Henning, Emily Reyna, Daniel Wang, Matthew Welch, Andrew J. Hoffman (2017). Hybrid Organizations: New Business Models for Environmental Leadershi. Routledge.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  9. ^ "Guayaki: Blending Tradition and Regeneration". Sounds and Colours. January 21, 2016. Retrieved February 21, 2020.
  10. ^ Change, B. The (October 10, 2017). "Will Wall Street Embrace B Corps?". Medium. Retrieved March 23, 2021.
  11. ^ foodnavigator-usa.com. "If you survive, you thrive: Guayaki yerba mate's slow-burning success". foodnavigator-usa.com. Retrieved February 21, 2020.
  12. ^ "Stefan Kozak Announced as New CEO of Guayakí Yerba Mate Beverage Company". Cision PR Newswire. April 28, 2021.
  13. ^ Folch, Christine. (2010). "Stimulating Consumption: Yerba Mate Myths, Markets, and Meanings from Conquest to Present." Comparative Studies in Society and History 52.1 6-36.

External links[edit]