- Product sustainability. We’re working on three initiatives that will make our products more sustainable: (1) we’re looking at using recycled materials in our product development; (2) we’re implementing a more robust refurbishment program to extend the life cycle of our products; and (3) we’re working on creating packaging that will use 100% eco-friendly materials. Our repair program will be in place by the end of the year and in the next few months we'll be setting specific targets and goals for the use of sustainable materials in our product and packaging. We also want to address the issue surrounding plastic bags. It’s an industry-wide issue and there is no easy solution, but it’s something we are continuing to work on.
- Health and wellness. Our product has primarily been marketed as a device that cooks red meat. While we believe our product can do much more than that, we know that Anova is seen fundamentally as a product that cooks the best steak ever. We’re concerned about sustainability issues associated with red meat AND about the health effects associated with a steak-heavy diet. Our marketing team will be creating content around health and wellness issues and will focus on the creation of non-red meat recipes.
- Diversity and inclusion. One of our foundational values is that everyone should have a seat at the table. This means that we want people on the team to feel included and respected. It also means we honor and respect diversity. Our CSR program will be developing specific goals around diversity and inclusion that will be incorporated into hiring processes and ongoing operations.
- Supporting local charities with hunger-related challenges. We believe we have an obligation to help our local community. In the past, we have done small, one-off projects in an effort to help. These small things are nice, but we can do better. We have a unique opportunity to help local charities targeting hunger-related issues. For example, using just one of our products, an organization can cook warm meals for hundreds of people. We've committed to donating 1,500 refurbished products to local charities.
In June, we hired Anastasia Plotnikova (pictured above) as CSR Manager to ensure this program is a priority going forward. Anastasia comes to Anova with an MSc from the London School of Economics and a human rights and communications background. She has worked as an advocate for women and children’s rights both at home and abroad with organizations such as UNICEF and the Fairtrade Foundation. She is deeply passionate about creating a program at Anova that will have a positive and lasting impact on our community and on our business.
We’re in the early stages of this program. Leading up to 2020, we’ll be working on partnership opportunities with local charities, developing very specific goals for the priorities outlined above, implementing our revamped refurbishment program, and finding ways to work with #anovafoodnerds on philanthropic programs that they’re passionate about. We are excited to use this program to generate value for customers and our business and to drive innovation. It will be a learning process, but at least if we fail, we fail forward.
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Thanks so much for your support.
- Stephen Svajian, Co-Founder & CEO