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This is the twelfth year in a row that Starbucks has received the honor. 

Elisabeth Sherman
February 13, 2018

Starbucks has once again been honored by the Ethisphere Institute as one of the most ethical companies in the world. Just six other food and beverage companies, including Mars Incorporated, which was not recognized last year, join the coffee chain on the 2018 list.

Since 2007, the Ethisphere Institute has been recognizing companies which “influence and drive positive change in the business community.” In a statement, the Ethisphere Institute wrote that companies which consistently show “transparency and authenticity,” should be rewarded for upholding values which “support the rule of law and operate with decency.”

This year, 135 companies from 23 countries and in 57 industries were honored. Kellogg’s; Mars Incorporated; the Italian coffee company Illy; Grupo Bimbo, an Mexican bakery chain; and PepisoCo were all chosen for the honor, alongside Starbucks (which is classified as a “specialty eatery”, and does not appear in the food and beverage category). Starbucks has been chosen every single year the Ethisphere Institute has compiled its list.

In the past, Starbucks has made an effort to hire veterans, and has pledged to donate at least 100 million healthy coffee trees in places like Central America, in order to support efforts to make coffee farming more sustainable. 1,200 Starbucks locations are already classified as environmentally friendly (although to be fair, the company boasts around 20,000 locations so Starbucks still has long way to go before it becomes completely green). Illy coffee has also long been committed to sourcing only sustainably grown coffee beans.

Mars Incorporated is also helping battle climate change: The confectionary company launched their Sustainability in a Generation Plan last year, and has committed to both donating $1 billion to fight climate change and reducing the company’s own carbon footprint by 60 percent by 2050.

Hopefully these honors will encourage more businesses to take on initiatives that protect the environment, leading the way for even more food and beverage companies to appear on next year's list.