New York, NY – Today, the Tent Partnership for Refugees – a nonprofit organization that mobilizes the business community to support refugees – announced the launch of UNSTUCK™, an initiative to create job opportunities for people fleeing their homes as a result of violence, war, and persecution. UNSTUCK will do this by partnering with leading brands to make sought-after products with ingredients sourced from suppliers employing refugees.
“As our name suggests, we believe that when refugees have access to legal, fair employment in their new host communities, they’re able to get their lives unstuck, lifting up their families and local economies,” said Nick O’Flaherty, Director of UNSTUCK.
Starting by working with processed fruit suppliers in Latin America, UNSTUCK will help its brand partners identify suppliers who are hiring or willing to hire refugees and connect them to local NGO partners to help them recruit, train and integrate refugee employees
“Our goal is to create a coalition of businesses – starting with food and beverage companies like Chobani, our pilot partner – that will make and sell UNSTUCK co-branded products. We want to bring more like-minded food and beverage brands on board to help us make an even greater impact, and create more jobs for refugees”, said O’Flaherty.
UNSTUCK’s self-sustaining model is an industry first. “Instead of the traditional ‘donate a percentage of profits to good causes’ model, we’re using the power of the market to create ongoing impact”, continued O’Flaherty. “The more UNSTUCK products we sell, the more ingredients brands source, the more job opportunities for refugees we help create.”
The model allows brands to not only take a stand on a critical social issue, but to act on it. Consumers increasingly choose brands that walk the talk on social issues. Research from Havas Media Group shows that 73 percent of consumers say brands must act now for the good of society and the planet, but 71 percent don’t believe brands will deliver on their promises. UNSTUCK is able to help companies make progress on their ESG goals by driving the economic and social inclusion of refugees through their day-to-day business.
UNSTUCK’s initial efforts are focused on Latin America, where more than five million Venezuelans have been forced to flee violence and economic collapse. UNSTUCK has partnered with food maker Chobani to develop the initiative’s first product: Chobani® & Unstuck™ Greek Yogurt Mango & Cream, made with mangos sourced from suppliers in Colombia and Peru hiring Venezuelan refugees.
“We’ve always been a company with heart & soul. This new product, while absolutely delicious, is innovative in its supply chain design. This is not a charity-product — we are not making a donation — but instead the purchase of the product inherently provides jobs for refugees working at our fruit suppliers,” said Niel Sandfort, Chobani’s Chief Innovation Officer. “UNSTUCK has the potential to make a meaningful impact on the refugee crisis, so the more brands that come on board, the bigger the impact we can make together.”
Sergio Karagumechian, General Manager of CEA, one of Chobani’s mango suppliers, said: “While we considered hiring Venezuelan refugees in the past, we were unsure how to go about it and how to successfully integrate them alongside our Colombian workers. By joining UNSTUCK, we were able to work with the UNSTUCK team to find refugee talent in Colombia and quickly bring them into our company. Hiring Venezuelans means we can help them restart their lives in Colombia, but it’s also good for our business – they are committed workers, and they bring diversity to our teams. We’re excited to continue to work with more brands joining the UNSTUCK coalition, while continuing to make a positive impact on our community.”
Chobani® & Unstuck™ Greek Yogurt Mango & Cream is sold nationally at retail and grocery stores at a suggested retail price of $4.29.
For more information and to find out how your brand can become part of UNSTUCK, visit www.unstuck.org.
UNSTUCK is a new way for brands to create job opportunities for refugees through their day-to-day business. Getting back to work is the first step to rebuilding the lives of the 30 million people forced to flee their homes. UNSTUCK brand partners develop and market profitable products made with ingredients sourced from suppliers hiring refugees. Our self-sustaining model means brands can make an ongoing impact on refugee employment, and help deliver on their ESG commitments. Find out more at www.UNSTUCK.org
About the Tent Partnership for Refugees
With more and more refugees displaced for longer periods of time, businesses have a critical role to play in helping refugees integrate economically in their new host communities. The Tent Partnership for Refugees mobilizes the global business community to improve the lives and livelihoods of 30 million refugees who have been forcibly displaced from their home countries. Founded by Chobani’s founder and CEO Hamdi Ulukaya in 2016, we are a network of over 140 major companies committed to including refugees. Tent believes that companies can most sustainably support refugees by leveraging their core business operations – by engaging refugees as potential employees, entrepreneurs and consumers. Find out more at www.tent.org
Our founding mission is to make “better food for more people.” Chobani disrupted the yogurt category by making higher protein Greek yogurt, with only natural ingredients, accessible and delicious. Over a decade later, Chobani has become America’s No.1 selling Greek yogurt while continuously innovating, launching oatmilks, non-dairy probiotic drinks, dairy- and plant-based creamers, and ready-to-drink coffees. As we elevate nutrition for millions of people, Chobani also uses food as a force for good in the world – putting humanity first in everything we do. Our philanthropic efforts focus on giving a portion of the company’s annual profits to support the needs of our communities. All Chobani products are kosher certified, and are made without any artificial flavors, sweeteners, or preservatives. With manufacturing in New York, Idaho and Australia, Chobani products are available throughout North America and distributed in Asia and Latin America. For more information, please visit www.chobani.com and www.facebook.com/chobani