Benefit Corporation Report for Year 2017
Knowwhereyourfoodcomesfrom.com, Inc. came into existence on April 2, 2012 when the New York State Department of State (Division of Corporations and State Records) issued a filing receipt noting its “Exist Date” as of April 2, 2012. Pursuant to its Certificate of Incorporation, knowwhereyourfoodcomesfrom.com, Inc. is “a benefit corporation;”
Pursuant to the New York Business Corporation Law Sec. 1708(a), a benefit corporation must deliver to each shareholder an annual benefit report and pursuant to Sec. 1708(d) deliver a copy of the benefit report for filing to the Department of State for filing. Pursuant to Sec. 1708(c), a benefit corporation must post its most recent benefit report on the public portion of its website.
This Benefit Report for Year 2017 for knowwhereyourfoodcomesfrom.com, Inc. has been prepared by Frank W. Barrie, the benefit corporation’s President. Pursuant to the benefit corporation’s bylaws, at the annual meeting held on February 1, 2017, the shareholders elected three directors of the benefit corporation: Frank W. Barrie, Albany, NY; Edward Stevens, Loudonville, NY; and Kathryn Sikule, Albany, NY. At the Annual Meeting of the Board of Directors on February 1, 2017, Frank W. Barrie was elected President of the Board and Edward Stevens was elected Secretary of the Board.
II. Process and rationale for selecting the third party standard used to prepare the benefit report
The mission of knowwhereyourfoodcomesfrom.com, Inc. conforms to the mission statement set forth on the website www.knowwhereyourfoodcomesfrom.com, i.e., to promote local agriculture by encouraging consumers to eat locally grown foods, which are produced in a sustainable and healthy way, or “organically” grown, so as to preserve and support small farm economies and to ensure a healthy environment for future generations. The Benefit Corp Information Center (www.benefitcorp.net) provides guidance on selecting a third party standard. Utilizing this guidance, the third party standard to assess the social and environmental performance of knowwhereyourfoodcomesfrom.com, Inc. was selected. Food Alliance (www.foodalliance.org) provides comprehensive third-party certification for social and environmental responsibility in agriculture and the food industry.
The voluntary, third-party certification program of Food Alliance is based on these six principles: 1. Protect, conserve and enhance soil, water, wildlife habitat and biodiversity; 2. Conserve energy, reduce and recycle waste; 3. Reduce use of pesticides and other toxic or hazardous materials; 4. Maintain transparent and traceable supply chains; 5. Support safe and fair working conditions; 6. Guarantee food product integrity, with no genetically engineered or artificial ingredients.
III. Ways in which the benefit corporation pursued general and specific public benefit during the year and the extent to which general public benefit was created
The benefit corporation was created in order to operate the website www.knowwhereyourfoodcomesfrom.com. This website has three major directories, organized geographically, to provide information on (1) farmers markets, (2) community supported agriculture (CSA) farms, and (3) farm to table restaurants committed to the use of local and/or organic foods. Under each of these three categories, the website has a page for each state of the United States and each province of Canada, and under the dining category, there are also directories for Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Puerto Rico and in Europe: Denmark, England, France, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Russia, Scotland, Sweden and Wales. This information has been made available at no cost to visitors to the website thereby conferring a “general public benefit.”
The website has also posted the following specific articles/items during 2017 (also at no cost to visitors to the website):
(1) New Year good wishes and 10 Reasons to Buy Local Food (1/5/17);
(2) A restaurant review, Hearty Late-Season Italian Dinner at Praiseworthy Coppi’s Organic in DC (1/10/2017);
(3) A news report, Sold-Out Wendell Berry Talk in Berkshires (1/18/17);
(4) A movie review, Raw Roots of The McDonald’s Corp Exposed in The Founder Starring Michael Keaton as Ray Kroc (1/30/17);
(5) A news report, Founder of World’s Biggest Bakery, With $14 Billion in Sales, Dies at 98 (2/9/17);
(6) A restaurant review, Fine Dining at Thistle in Oregon’s Willamette Valley (2/16/17);
(7) A recipe, A Sweet & Tart Evening Smoothie With Cherries (2/24/17);
(8) A book review, Inspiring Cuisine: Damon Baehrel’s Native Harvest (3/3/17);
(9) A news report, Rural State College Bolsters Local Farm Economy (3/11/17);
(10) A review of a documentary series on-line, The Perennial Plate Documentary Series Strikes Gold For St. Patrick’s Day (3/17/17);
(11) A recipe, Springtime Energy Boost: Homemade Cherry Almond Granola Bars (3/24/17);
(12) A news report, Consumer Reports Calls on FDA To Cut Loophole Allowing Meat Producers To Use Antibiotics On Healthy Animals for Disease Prevention (4/3/17);
(13) A news report, Fruits & Veggies Rated for Pesticide Residues: Latest Dirty Dozen (4/13/17);
(14) A restaurant review, Flavorful Middle Eastern Cuisine in Portland, OR: Locally Sourced and Seasonal (4/24/17);
(15) A book review, Resilient Agriculture In the Face of Change: 25 Small Farms Inspiring Hope (5/1/17);
(16) A review of a documentary, Dan Barber, Blue Hill Chef & Author of The Third Plate, Profiled on the Documentary Series Chef’s Table (5/8/17);
(17) A news report, Vermont #1 (Again!) In Local Food Rankings & Maine, Oregon, Montana, New Hampshire Round-Out Top Five (5/19/17);
(18) A restaurant review, A Taste of Wild Quebec at Two Montreal Restaurants: Au Pied De Cochon & Manitoba (5/23/17);
(19) An exhibit review, Food-themed Art of Salvador Dali, René Magritte & Others Celebrates Gastronomy in a Surrealist Banquet (5/25/17);
(20) A restaurant review, Fiddlehead Bistro in Saranac Lake: First Rate Dining in Upstate NY’s Adirondacks (6/1/17);
(21) A news report, Ensuring A Drinkable Glass of Water With Your Next Meal (6/7/17);
(22) A dining review, From 12 Pizzas Each Night, Now 20 Pies Available For Lucky Saratogians (6/15/17);
(23) A recipe, Delicious & Wholesome: Oatmeal Strawberry Squares From Beatrice Trum Hunter’s Trail-Blazing “The Natural Foods Cookbook” From 1961 (6/22/17);
(24) A news report, American Obesity Problem Spreading World-wide (6/28/17);
(25) A book review, Mysteries Buried in the Kitchen: Sasha martin’s Life from Scratch (7/1/17);
(26) A news report, Scientific Research Supports Eating More Yogurt (7/7/17);
(27) A review of an artist’s project, Artist’s Vision Spreads Nature’s Fruitfulness to Post-Industrial Bronx Landscape (7/12/17);
(28) A book review, Appreciation for America’s Culinary Diversity Before Factory Farms, Fast Food & Homogenization (7/19/17);
(29) A recipe, Delicious Cracker Recipe: Homemade With Organic & Local Whole Grains (7/27/17);
(30) A dining review, Savoring A Farm Brunch At Our Table’s Farm in Sherwood, Oregon (8/2/17);
(31) A dining review, Celebrating Mohawk Harvest’s 8th Anniversary With A Delicious Brunch at the Food Co-op in Gloversville (Fulton County, NY) (8/8/17);
(32) A bakery review, Chicagoland’s Praiseworthy Artisan Bakery: Hewn in Evanston (8/15/17);
(33) A news report, Live Webcast Available of Next Month’s Sold-Out 2017 Farm Aid Concert Near Pittsburgh (8/22/17);
(34) A news report, Labeling Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream “Natural” Provokes the Organic Consumers Association (8/29/17);
(35) A news report, 227 Universities & Colleges Participate in Sierra’s Cool Schools 2017 Rankings & Two Schools Tie for #1 for Food: Sterling College & Univ. of Winnipeg (9/1/17);
(36) A recipe, Essex Farm’s Kristin Kimball Advises: Steam Corn on the Cob, Don’t Boil It (9/8/17);
(37) A news report, Ever Important & Simple Advice: Be Wary of Marketing Claims (9/14/17);
(38) A news report, Three Cheers For NOFA-New Hampshire’s Program to Subsidize CSA Farm Shares for Limited Income Folks (9/21/17);
(39) A news report, Upending Traditional Diets of Real Food While Processed Food & Obesity Spreads Worldwide (9/29/17);
(40) A news report, Increasing Risk: Imported Non-Organic Products May Be Labeled As Organic (10/6/17);
(41) A news report, Better for the Land, Water & Air: Advocates for Grass-Based Grazing Gather in Upstate NY (10/11/17);
(42) A recipe, The Most Delicious Green Beans: Fedco’s Haricots Verts Prepared Almondine (10/19);
(43) A news report, Nearly 90% of Coffee Growing Land in Latin America Threatened by Global Warming (10/23/17);
(44) An exhibit review, Cultivating America’s Gardens: Thoughtful Exhibit at Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History (10/27/17);
(45) A mint tea recipe, Potted Peppermint Porch Plants Prospering Into November in Upstate NY (11/2/17);
(46) A book review, Australian Chef and Food Educator Stephanie Allen’s Beautiful New Cookbook: The Cook’s Table (11/7/17);
(47) A news report, Paul McCartney Voices Support for Meatless Mondays In Advance of UN’s Climate Change Conference (11/10/17);
(48) A book review, Pickling Foods: A Vital Part of the Good Food Movement (11/17/17);
(49) A book review, 20 Cups of Mashed Roasted Pumpkin From “Volunteer” Rumbo Pumpkins (11/21/17);
(50) A news report, 21st Century Gleaning of Farm Crops Providing Food Security For People In Need (12/1/17);
(51) A recipe, Jonny Cake Recipe: Secret Is In the Corn (12/8/17);
(52) A news report, Consumer Reports Signs Off On Superiority of 100% Grass-Fed Meat & Dairy (12/14/17);
(53) A book review, A Philosophy of Food Rooted In the Ethical Virtue of Hospitality (12/22/17);
(54) A news report, Sharing Recipes Using Real Food From Farmers Markets Or CSA Farms to Build Community (12/29/17).
The website has also freely provided information on the following topics:
(1) Food Co-ops;
(2) Sources for the following local foods: cheeses, cooking/salad oils, honey, maple syrup, pasture raised meat and yogurt;
(3) Fair-traded tropical foods: coffee, tea and chocolate;
(4) Craft bakeries;
(5) Farm to Table Pizzerias
(6) A special dining directory where diners can have a meal on the farm or in the garden where food served is grown;
(7) Organic apples and organic & craft cider;
(8) Organic/heirloom/open source seeds;
(9) Local grains & flours;
(10) Local organic beans/legumes;
(11) Fresh flowers CSAs;
(12) Local Food Hubs;
(13) Farm Camps for kids/teens;
(14) Employment opportunities related to “meaningful food work” by providing links to (i) www.goodfoodjobs.com, (ii) Northeast Organic Farming Association, www.nofa.org; and (iii) the Greenhorns, http://thegreenhorns.wordpress.com;
(15) Opportunities for organic farming experience by providing links to (i) World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms (WWOOF) and (ii) Multinational Exchange for Sustainable Agriculture (MESA); and
(16) Gardening topics including community gardens, home food preservation, container gardening, gardening tips and edible garden design/install.
The content appearing on the website www.knowwhereyourfoodcomesfrom.com is in harmony with the six principles of the Food Alliance certification program delineated above.
Small ads/logos appearing on the website during 2016 have promoted the following organizations/entities (at no cost to these organizations/entities): (1) Native Seeds, www.nativeseeds.org, (2) Equal Exchange, www.equalexchange.coop, and (3) American Farmland Trust, www.farmland.org. These 3 organizations/entities reflect principles in harmony with the six principles of the Food Alliance certification program delineated above.
In 2016, the website also ran the ads/logos for three businesses: Liberty Tabletop, Fruition Seeds and My Pet Chicken. Liberty Tabletop is now the only manufacturer of flatware in the United States, and its concern for the American consumer’s health and safety is reflected in its commitment to only use stainless steel from American steel mills that follow stringent environmental and safety standards, to meet or exceed all federal and state environmental regulations and standards, and to never use harsh or carcinogenic chemicals in its manufacturing process.
A small ad also appeared on the three New York related pages for dining, CSA farms and farmers markets, respectively, to promote the Bees Knees Café operated by Heather Ridge Farm on the farm in Preston Hollow, NY which has a “fiercely local” food menu (at no cost to this farm café). The logo for Farm Share Studio is also featured on the website. Created by artist Laura Shore, Farm Share Studio focuses on Shore’s paintings, “which celebrate local food and the farmers who grow it.”
IV. Any circumstances that have hindered the creation by the benefit corporation of general or specific public benefit
V. Assessment of the performance of the benefit corporation
In the period January 1 through December 31, 2017, traffic to the website, www.knowwhereyourfoodcomesfrom.com remained steady, with a slight increase in the number of page views to 73,017 from the prior year’s 72,538 page views.
During 2017, the benefit corporation has maintained an active Facebook page [https://www.facebook.com/knowwhereyourfoodcomesfrom/]. As of the close of the year, the Facebook page has nearly 300 followers, with Facebook posts appearing approximately every week.
Traffic to the website during the calendar year 2017:
|Average Visit Duration:||01:00|
Although users of the website are located world-wide, 91% of visitors were located in the United States and the ten states with the most Sessions in calendar year 2016:
|1. New York||6,127|
|6. New Jersey||2,027|
VI. Compensation paid by the benefit corporation during the year to each director in that capacity?
VII. The name of each person that owns beneficially or of record 5% or more of the outstanding shares of the benefit corporation:
Frank W. Barrie