Seeds of Change, an heirloom seed company, was bought out by Mars Corporation in 1997. Burt's Bees was bought out by Clorox Corp. Cascadian Farms sold out to General Mills in 1999.
Via Business Insider: for years now, Burt’s Bees has been marketing itself as a local brand from Durham, N.C., and is proudly described as “Earth Friendly Natural Personal Care for The Greater Good.”
However, it downplays the fact that it was sold for nearly a billion dollars a few years ago to mega-corporation Clorox.
Brands like Burt’s Bees and Ben & Jerry’s attract a growing market that has been described as “environmentally-conscious consumers.“ They rely on being marketed as ”local and natural,” but many consumers are unaware that these brands now belong to major corporations, reports Business Insider.
To be sure, many of these companies began as small, entrepreneurial startups, and though being bought out by a corporation may have been a hard decision, the owners all sought ways to preserve their image/ideals as a part of their buyout deals.Image: By cazatoma on Flickr
Mars bought Seeds of Change in 1997 Seeds of Change was founded as a seed company specializing in organics back in 1989. After candy-giant Mars bought the company, Seeds of Change was allowed to keep running mostly as it did before.
In 2010, Mars decided to close the Seeds of Change Research Farm and Gardens, which boasted thousands of varieties of plants.The shutdown drew criticism because the farm had been synonymous with the brand and was a part of its marketing.
General Mills bought Cascadian Farm in 1999
Cascadian Farm used to be famous for its cereals with “no added sugar.” In 2010, this label disappeared from its boxes.A Cascadian Farm customer said her children noticed a funny new taste in their Purely O’s. It turned out the cereal had tripled its sugar count.
Cascadian Farm customers felt duped and complained the new cereal tasted “dreadful” and looked “disgusting.”Image: By Mr. T in DC on Flickr
Unilever bought Ben & Jerry’s for $326 million in 2000
The ice-cream maker said Unilever was determined to nurture Ben & Jerry’s commitment to community values, and its commitment to donate 7.5 percent of profits to social causes.
However, in 2002 the company was accused of abusing its “All Natural” label by the Center for Science and Public Interest and in 2005 Ben & Jerry’s CEO Walt Freese admitted the company had grown soft on continuing its traditions of social consciousness. Read more . . .
Learn to know the source of what you buy. Buy local when you can. Buy heirloom seeds that are packaged to last 50 years in your freezer. Visit www.downtoearthseeds.com