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Does Avocado Have a Supplier Screening Process?
Does Avocado Have a Supplier Screening Process?

We ask that our suppliers meet our standards for social and environmental responsibility.

Mark Abrials avatar
Written by Mark Abrials
Updated over a week ago


Avocado Green Brands (Avocado) is in business to create greener, better alternatives for people and planet and demonstrate that business can be used as a force for good. To work towards this goal, we strive to work with suppliers who share our commitment to positive environmental and social impact.

This policy isused internally by Avocado’s product team and procurement team when making purchasing decisions. For example, this policy should assist in answering questions such as:

  • “What standards are desirable for suppliers to meet?”

  • “What makes one supplier more aligned with Avocado’s mission than another?”

  • “What are Avocado’s supply chain targets that we can measure progress on?”

Avocado will also review its practices on a regular basis (at least every three years), to understand our progress towards our value chain objectives.


This policy is tailored to COGS/product suppliers. Nevertheless, the values described in these guidelines should be applied to all vendors that enable Avocado to carry out its business activities. (i.e. office suppliers, packaging, and services).

All suppliers must be able to meet all standards and expectations as outlined in Avocado’s Supplier Code of Conduct. The Supplier Code of Conduct outlines the floor, but not the ceiling, of desired supplier performance and characteristics. This policy is intended to outline the favorable characteristics that Avocado seeks above and beyond compliance.

We do not expect all suppliers to be able to meet all criteria. Rather, the procurement team should be able to defend (a) if a supplier falls into one or more of the above qualities and how, or (b) if not, what criteria was considered to select the supplier.

This is not a retroactive policy, however we do reserve the right to change our purchasing partners at our discretion in order to increase the impact of our purchasing practices. This policy should also not be considered set in stone. Avocado employees are encouraged to bring forward other favorable characteristics that could be used to guide procurement decisions and support Avocado’s goal of achieving an impactful and transparent value chain.


We seek to partner with suppliers who share our goal of fostering a purpose-driven economy through positive practices for workers, communities, and the environment at large. In addition, we want to provide our customers with the highest quality product.

Specifically, Avocado gives preference to suppliers who are able to demonstrate:

  • Positive environmental practices, above what is required by regulation

  • Strong social impact, including fair labor practices, above what is required by regulation

  • Commitment to a diverse and inclusive economy

  • Local ownership to Avocado’s production centers, where feasible

The criteria listed above are not in order of preference, but rather demonstrate the overarching characteristics that team members should strive to meet when making procurement decisions.

While the exact specifications may vary based on specific supplier and product context, we wish to provide some common guidance by offering details about each broad consideration below.

Positive Environmental Practices

We seek positive environmental practices throughout our supply chain, specifically but not limited to toxin reduction, climate impact, resource conservation, and environmental stewardship. While exact criteria may vary by context, we look for the following:

  • Credible environmental certifications at the product level indicating:

    • Toxin reduction (e.g. GOLS or GOTS Organic Certification, MADE SAFE Non-Toxic Certification, Greenguard GOLD Certification, OEKO-TEX Standard 100 Certification)

    • Land stewardship (e.g. FSC Certification, Rainforest Alliance Certification, Responsible Wool Standard)

    • Resource conservation (e.g. Recycled Claim Standard, Global Recycled Standard)

    • Animal welfare (e.g. Vegan Certification, PETA Approved)

  • Ability to demonstrate environmentally responsible operations or qualities beyond what is required by regulation. This may include:

    • Reporting on GHG emissions and/or demonstrable practices to reduce GHG impact of purchased materials

    • Reporting on waste production and/or demonstrable practices to reduce waste produced for purchased materials

    • Reporting on water usage and/or demonstrable practices to reduce water footprint of purchased materials

    • Reporting on any known biodiversity impacts and/or demonstrable practices to reduce biodiversity impact of purchased materials

  • Disclosure of all known chemicals of concern that exist within products/materials sold. Chemicals of concern include: CMRs (as identified by California Prop 65), PBTs, EDRs.

  • Where packaging is required from suppliers, preference for suppliers who work with environmentally preferred materials, including recycled (PCR) content, reusable packaging, and/or recyclable packaging materials.

Strong Social Impact

We seek procurement relationships with suppliers who contribute to fair, healthy, and empowered workforces and communities. We use the following principles as guidelines:

  • Ethics-related or social impact certifications at the company-level (e.g. B Corp certification, Living Wage Employer, “Best Place to Work” awards, or similar)

  • Ethics-related or social impact certifications at the product level (e.g. Fair Trade)

  • Innovative governance structures, such as worker-owned or producer-owned cooperatives

  • Demonstrable good governance practices, such as sharing an internal Code of Ethics / Code of Business Conduct

  • Demonstrable strong workplace practices, such as:

    • Health and wellness practices that exceed local and national regulations (e.g. supplemental health insurance, wellness benefits)

    • Payment above industry benchmarks, or at a verified Living Wage

    • Provision of training and professional development opportunities

  • Demonstrable health and safety protections, including a “right to know” clause and adequate training regarding the use of potential toxins (e.g. pesticides) and every effort is made to limit exposure to all hazards, including natural hazards (e.g. sun exposure)

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

As we continue in our pursuit for diverse and inclusive economies, we seek to uplift underrepresented groups within our supply chain by considering the following factors:

  • Diversity of ownership and/or leadership, including whether the organization is majority-owned/led by BIPOC, women, or other underrepresented groups

  • Demonstrable positive workplace practices and leadership in their sector related to justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion, such as formalized anti-racism and/or LGBTQ+ inclusion action plans

  • Demonstration of innovative hiring methods (e.g. a workforce development program that reduce barriers to enter the workforce for individuals with chronic barriers to employment

  • Location in underserved (poor, low-income) communities, and creation of economic opportunities within these communities, including in the Global South

For suppliers located in the Global South, we specifically seek attributes that indicate suppliers are engaged in fair trade practices and contributing to poverty alleviation. Specifically, when engaging with suppliers in the Global South, we consider:

  • Direct trade relationships where possible to have greater transparency in our supply chain and to be able to build strong relationships. Where direct trade is not available at the Avocado level, the procurement team should extend this consideration to the supplier’s relationships, preferring suppliers who themselves have a direct trade relationship with supplier communities

  • Certifications at the product-level that demonstrate strong labor standards and/or beneficial trade terms (e.g. Fair Trade certification)

  • Engagement in beneficial trade terms and practices, including:

    • Premium paid beyond market price for community development

    • Support for initiatives for upstream supply chain partners to engage in capacity building, such as improved efficiency, improved quality assurance, and/or improved social and environmental practices

  • Ability to ​demonstrate positive relationships with local communication to source harvesting and production

Local & Independent Ownership

We understand the powerful impact that local procurement has on our community. While many of our product materials come from global suppliers, we are fortunate to have a strong community of local vendors in the greater Los Angeles area. Where feasible and appropriate for the material purchased, we give preference to:

  • Businesses that are locally and independently owned within the Greater Los Angeles area or within a ~50 mile radius of our production facilities

  • If no viable options are available within this area, priority should then be given to businesses within the state, and then US companies

  • For purchases made for facilities other than our principal production facilities, this same principle should be applied, with preference for suppliers local to the relevant facilities (e.g. within 50 miles)

  • Please note that for materials and products which can be purchased directly from suppliers in the Global South, our preference for fair trade and direct trade should supercede our preference for local, due to the outsized impact we can create in these communities.

Specifications for Packaging

Packaging suppliers should be evaluated along all of the guidelines outlined above (where appropriate), with specific attention to circular economy principles. Circular economy principles include: reducing or eliminating waste and pollution, keeping materials in use, or regenerating natural systems. Specific practices may include:

  • Preference to upcycled/ post-consumer-recycled (PCR) content for primary/secondary packaging (boxes, shrink wrap) and reusable packaging for tertiary packaging

  • If virgin packaging must be purchased, preference should be given to recyclable / compostable packaging (Note: any such claim should be cross-referenced to local infrastructure in the locations where it is sold to ensure compatibility)

Specifications for Transportation

In line with our goal to reduce emissions where we can, we are always seeking to reduce the transportation- related impacts of our supply chain, which includes both screening suppliers to reduce the total distance traveled, and working with suppliers to pursue lower impact transportation methods. We seek relationships with suppliers who will work with us on positive transportation practices to move goods to and from Avocado sites. Specifically, our preferences include:

  • Requirement for goods to be transported via the lowest impact transportation methods commonly available for the phase of transport. For goods transported from overseas, this means avoiding shipment by air transport in all feasible cases

  • Working with transportation and shipping partners to prioritize lower impact transport vehicles, including electric and/or low-emission vehicles

Monitoring and Compliance

Avocado’s procurement team is responsible for collecting data on significant suppliers on a regular basis, including:

  • Understanding baseline performance against priority considerations as part of new supplier screening and onboarding

  • Annual review of existing supplier performance

Information may be gathered through publicly available sources (such as webpages) and through supplier interactions, including phone calls, documentation requests, and/or surveys.

Collected data will be analyzed for performance against priority metrics, including:




  • 2023: Baseline percentage of Significant Suppliers who have environmental certifications at the supplier or product level

  • 2026: Increase percentage of suppliers with environmental certifications to [10+%]


  • 2023: Baseline percentage of Significant Suppliers who have social impact certifications at the supplier or product level

  • 2023: Increase percentage of suppliers with social impact certifications to [10+%]


  • 2023: Baseline percentage of Significant Suppliers who are owned by individuals from underrepresented groups

  • 2026: Increase percentage of suppliers with diversity of ownership to [10%+]

  • 2023: Baseline percentage of Significant Suppliers who are located in low-income communities

  • 2026: Increase percentage of suppliers in low-income communities to [10%+]

  • 2023: Baseline percentage of Significant Suppliers engaged in Fair Trade practices (at company or product level)

  • 2026: Increase percentage of Fair Trade suppliers or purchases to [15%+]



CMRs: carcinogens, mutagens, and reproductive toxins (as defined under California Prop 65)

PBTs: persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic materials (as defined by the EPA)

EDRs: endocrine disruptors, or hormone-disrupting chemicals (as defined by the EU)

Individuals with chronic barriers to employment

Chronically underemployed populations are groups that face systemic barriers to achieving and maintaining employment. Barriers to employment will vary by context and by geography, but generally include low income communities, physical or mental disabilities, homelessness, chronic discrimination, incarceration or criminal history, alcohol or drug dependency, and a history of experienced violence (political, gang, or domestic). However, this list is non-exhaustive (B Lab).

Living Wage

The living wage model is a market-based approach that draws upon geographically specific expenditure data related to a family’s likely minimum food, childcare, health insurance, housing, transportation, and other basic necessities (e.g. clothing, personal care items, etc.) costs. The living wage draws on these cost elements and the rough effects of income and payroll taxes to determine the minimum employment earnings necessary to meet a family’s basic needs while also maintaining self-sufficiency (Living Wage Calculator).

People from underrepresented groups

People who have traditionally not had equal access to economic opportunities because of discrimination or other societal barriers. This may vary by context and by geography. Take into consideration gender, ethnicity, sexual-orientation, age, disabilities, immigration background and/or low-income status that may qualify an individual as being part of a previously excluded population (B Lab).

Upcycled/ PCR-content

Upcycled means a material is being recycled into something of a higher value than its original form/use. PCT stands for Post-Consumer Recycled. This means the material has been previously used, recycled, and is now being used again as a raw material for the production of a new product.

Workforce development programs

These are programs to hire, provide quality jobs, and professionally develop individuals with barriers to employment (B Lab).

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