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Business working better

A few years into Seagreens, after our customary period of silence each morning, we wrote on a flip chart the names of everyone we could think of who made up the Seagreens business.

Several Pentel markers later - and sheets of names still coming - my colleague Rachel Rowland and I contemplated the diversity and quality of these relationships.

Beside each name we added the kind of relationship we had with these people - consumer, retailer, wholesaler, nutritionist, supplier, media, and so on. A few had been in touch that morning. Others not since Seagreens began...

In 1997 a small group met in London on a regular basis to guide our beginnings - Alex Kirchin, a young nutritionist; Simon Wright, a food industry consultant; Adrian Whitefoord, a graphic designer; Simon Ranger, a brand development consultant; Natasha Langdon, a business student; and Bernard Woods, financial adviser.

Over many years before this, through various activities and projects, most recently Seagreens, I have promoted "business for a better world, a better world for business". The theme is rehearsed in a July 2017 interview with Walnut Magazine - please click here

With Seagreens I wanted to create a global brand 'to deliver goodness and value in all our relationships'.

This corporate purpose guides our decisions and behaviour - product quality, packaging, telephone manner, selection of business partners and customers, our relations with partners and suppliers.

Instead of the conventional model, by which a profitable conventional business might support altruistic projects elsewhere, Seagreens should be the altruistic project itself.

Work that is altruistic can sit comfortably at the heart of life and commerce, not separate from it

Business which can also serve the greater good.

Around the brand we continue to build a consortium of partners - independent companies and individuals, fully integrated from ocean to end user, who comprise and run the Seagreens business.

This is Seagreens International Partnership, managed, like the brand itself, in the interests of our partners and customers by Seagreens Trust. Set up "to get a little of the best seaweed into the population daily diet".

There are proper checks and balances. A Partnership Council enables any customer or partner to raise matters of concern.

They can also contribute to the business of the brand, and many do, in a variety of ways, as fits with their own work and interests.

It is a joy that every day, our list of names grows longer...

And the degree to which Seagreens® manifests its founding vision is for you to judge. 

In the British Isles and Nordic region, we have an exceptional opportunity to develop a world class seaweed industry for human nutrition. The market for nutritious food seawed is broad and diverse.

Britain has already established a basis of global communication and trade, a legacy perhaps somewhat overshadowed and obfuscated by its post-War obsession with the European Union.

Working with nations and people in Greater Europe, the Commonwealth of Nations, the United States, Asia, and the East, we can build on this legacy with those individuals and companies who wish to develop Seagreens® business within or in addition to their own. 

Operating the highest standards of quality and sustainability we can play our part in a natural cycle - in particular, by returning valuable and depleted micronutrients to human and animal nutrition, and to sustainable agriculture rooted in the health of the soil.

I said more about this at the 1st Annual Conference of the Seaweed Health Foundation at the Natural History Museum in London in 2012.

The Foundation has a very specific constitution and clearly defined purposes. 

It aims to ensure 3 cornerstones of a sustainable global enterprise in nutritious food seaweed: research, standards, and information.

It operates public events as in this video, at the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh, in the public interest.

Unlike many business ventures, Seagreens is not being developed for sale.

The hope is that it will long continue, its administrators drawn from all parts of the Partnership and beyond.

The model is in place. There is no rush and no need to compromise.

Our most loyal customers will decide how fast and how far it will grow.

S. B. Ranger, founder, 2018