Velo is the first coffee roastery in Ireland to obtain the prestigious B Corp status

Cork-based Velo Coffee Roasters is the first coffee roastery in Ireland to obtain the prestigious B Corp Certification, marking a significant milestone in the company’s commitment to social and environmental responsibility.

B Corp status is bestowed upon businesses dedicated to upholding the highest standards of positive impact on society and the environment. It evaluates a company’s holistic social and environmental impact across five key areas: governance, workers, community, environment, and customers. Just over 30 businesses headquartered in Ireland hold this certification.

Velo coffee roastery achieves B Corp status

Suzanne Casey, General Manager of Velo Coffee Roasters said: “We are thrilled to achieve this gold standard of sustainability, and to be the first coffee roastery in Ireland to have done so. Our decision to pursue B-Corp certification stemmed from our genuine commitment to transparency — we want to adhere to comparable standards that will drive tangible change.

The process involved a comprehensive evaluation of every part of our operations — from packaging choices to policies to sustainability targets. While the accreditation system was rigorous, it compelled us to be even better and optimise our operations for the betterment of the planet, which ultimately will foster trust among suppliers and customers alike.”

As part of its social and environmental responsibility, Velo, which is stocked in Dunnes Stores, Tesco, and premium SuperValu stores along with Aldi stores nationwide and in the UK, sources speciality coffee beans in collaboration with their partner Covoya. This ensures full traceability to the farm and fosters sustainable partnerships with farmers. The company, which employs 15, has just announced it’s on track to invest over €7,000 this year into local community projects where it works, with a total of almost €20,000 invested in the past five years.

The company’s efforts include impactful initiatives such as supporting agricultural and social projects at origin, such as the Finca las Mercedes farm in El Salvador. By paying a premium on their coffee beans, Velo allows for funds to be directed back into the communities to support specific projects — including a new access bridge for a local school to shorten commutes and organising STEM education initiatives.

Already recognised as an Origin Green Gold company, the B Corp certification is the next progression in Velo’s journey toward social and environmental responsibility. With a commitment to continuous improvement and transparent reporting, Velo has also led the industry in sustainable packaging commitments, introducing completely recyclable packaging to their retail coffee in 2021.

Suzanne added: “At Velo, our primary objective is to make a meaningful impact on communities. From our team members and loyal customers to our inspiring suppliers and local communities, we view Velo as a cohesive community. Coffee has the power to bring people together, and we aim to leverage that power through responsible sourcing and production.”

Velo Coffee Roasters was established in 2018 by cafe owner Rob Horgan. The coffee was initially roasted on-site in the café managed by Suzanne Casey. After the success on the Grow With Aldi programme in 2018, Velo Coffee Roasters moved to a purpose-designed facility in Mayfield Business Park, Cork city in 2019 with Rob and Suzanne both moving into the roasting business full-time. Today, they run a successful e-commerce business and have recently sold their one-millionth bag of coffee in Aldi Ireland, while also launching into Aldi UK.

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