How do you define “good” food? Maybe to you good food is comfort food; food that tastes delicious and stirs up pleasant memories. Maybe you consider good food to be healthy, nourishing food. Or maybe good food equates to high-quality food and you splurge on expensive cuts of meat, fish, and artisan products.

But have you ever considered the “goodness” of your food to extend beyond the food itself? It’s time to start thinking about the benefits your food can have, aside from satisfying your taste buds and your tummy.

Given the current state of our world, with problems ranging from environmental concerns to terrorism, it is so important to know that there are companies out there that still care about how they give back to society.

Some of our most beloved food companies hope to improve our planet for future generations by incorporating a social or environmental giving tie-in to their brands.

But they can't achieve their goals alone. They need consumers (with excellent taste) to help them. By exercising our purchasing power to support socially- and environmentally-responsible companies, we are demonstrating a concern for our planet and doing our part to sustain it right by our favorite companies’ sides.

Our purchases also keep these sustainable companies in business, so that they can continue to make our world a better place to live.

Here are 8 of my favorite brands that have both good food and good intentions.

1) Alter Eco

espresso, tea, coffee
Alyssa Cronin

Alter Eco has a three-pronged sustainability initiative. They focus on being 1) socially just, 2) environmentally responsible, and 3) reliably delicious.The health, happiness, and future of farmers is important to Alter Eco, so they emphasize direct relationships with them, development programs for them, and empowerment of women.

And even though they are already a Fair Trade and Organic Certified company, they are working towards becoming a carbon negative business. Alter Eco, Mother Nature thanks you for your good deeds and my belly thanks you for your dope chocolate bars.

2) Dave’s Killer Bread

Dave’s Killer Bread whole-heartedly believes in the power of reinvention. No wonder one in three of their employees has a criminal background.

Since Dave’s feels that everyone is capable of achieving greatness, the company dedicates themselves to helping people turn second chances into sustainable change.

Their philanthropic initiatives don’t stop there. Dave’s also promotes sustainable agriculture and organic farming, and encourages employees to participate in either company-sponsored or individual community service.

3) Ben & Jerry’s

Becky Hughes

Although Ben & Jerry’s decadent ice cream concoctions do more than enough good for me, they also give back A TON to our world. The company’s three part mission, to make fantastic ice cream, to operate for sustainable financial growth, and to make the world a better place, drives each decision they make and aims to create prosperity for everyone connected to their business.

Issues that Ben & Jerry’s is passionate about include democracy, GMO labeling, climate justice, LGBT equality, Fair Trade, peace building, rBGH, and keeping money out of political elections. How one company can prioritize such a plethora of world problems is a mystery to me, but rest assured they are actively involved in tackling every single one.


chocolate, candy
Emma Delaney

We’ve all heard KIND’s mission: “do the KIND thing for your body, your taste buds and your world.” And it couldn’t be more straightforward. From healthy snacks to the way the company works, lives, and contributes, their focus is on spreading kindness.

This belief inspired KIND to create the KIND Movement, a collaborative effort with the community to make the world a bit kinder. This Movement was furthered when they started the KIND Foundation, a charitable organization that aims to promote healthier and more empathetic communities, as well as embrace any humanitarian initiatives. KINDa cool, if I do say so myself.

5) Justin’s

Reese’s, you better watch out because Justin’s Peanut Butter Cups are creeping their way into my heart. But Justin’s hopes to do more than make delicious snacks, they hope to make an impact. In order to do this, they focus their business on educating, inspiring, nourishing, and nurturing others.

Additionally, they are dedicated to paying-it-forward to the companies that helped them achieve success and taking care of their environment though sustainability initiatives, including recycled packaging and mindfully sourced ingredients. And did I mention their peanut butter cups?


Emily Waples

I didn’t know a nutrition bar could taste so much like dessert…until I discovered LARABAR. And the best part? All of their products are made from recognizable ingredients that are minimally processed.

Not only is LARABAR committed to creating non-GMO products made with Fair Trade ingredients, but they also partner with two bomb organizations, Feeding America and Terracycle. Feeding America aims to alleviate hunger and bring awareness to the issue of hunger, while Terracycle makes recyclable products.

Dessert-like nutrition AND sustainability initiatives make this a company you definitely want to get behind.

7) Alvarado St. Bakery

This tiny company makes the best sprouted bread I have ever tasted…in a solar powered bakery. Alvarado St. Bakery is incredibly environmentally conscious. One of their primary ways to give back is to make the company a sustainable “green” bakery in order to reduce its footprint.

They accomplish this by focusing on energy conservation and green energy production, water conservation, waste reduction, and pollution prevention.

Alvarado was even nationally recognized for its environment initiatives when it received a National Green Jobs award. Talk about some serious tree hugging.

8) The Soulfull Project

If you love breakfast, then I love you, and you'll love The Soulfull Project. Not only does the company offer mouthwateringly delicious hot breakfast cereal, but they are also dedicated to giving back to their community.

After witnessing poverty and hunger in Texas and New Jersey, the founders decided it was time to combat this widespread issue. For every cup of hot cereal that you purchase, The Soulfull Project donates a cup to a food shelter in the Philadelphia or Camden areas. 

With this giving model, the company donates a physical product, rather than money, because they take comfort in knowing that they are giving a tangible, quality product. Soulfull proves that good things truly do come in small packages. 

These companies need your help as consumers to be able to continue to do good for our world. So go forth and purchase. I promise you won’t regret that sandwich on two slices of Dave’s Killer Bread followed by an entire pint of Ben & Jerry’s Tonight Dough. You may even feel good about it, in more ways than one.