If you’re a diehard fan of sauerkraut, chances are you probably already have a jar (or two) of OlyKraut at home. Co-founded by Sash Sunday, OlyKraut is a raw sauerkraut and pickle company that prides itself on prepping products by hand and using locally-sourced ingredients and traditional preservation techniques to ensure that every bite is full of healthy probiotics. The next time you’re headed to a barbecue or picnic outing, BYOK (Bring Your Own Kraut) and read on to find out more about Sash and her Olympia, WA-based B Corp.
How a fascination with fermentation led to the birth of a business: “I started OlyKraut in 2008 to put my fermentation fanaticism to work building a food system that supports vibrant health and sustainable farms. Making delicious, nourishing, raw fermented vegetables with literal TONS of local produce while spreading the good word on healthy microbes is my idea of a good time. I really see processors who choose to source through local farms as having a huge opportunity to build up regional food systems all over the country. We buy a LOT of ingredients and those transactions should be with our neighboring farms! Our mission is to contribute to a thriving regional food system and a healthy community by making, selling, and promoting the consumption of raw fermented vegetables.”
On growing our business and the value of being a certified B Corp: “We have worked hard to make OlyKraut a good place to work in spite of having little resources. We are very flexible with people’s schedules and have periodic meetings with the staff where we do workshops on conflict resolution, sensitivity training, microagression training, etc. We work to support our local farms and enjoy seeing the number of pounds purchased increase each year, too. It’s nice to have a certification to point to that says, yes, we do all this stuff that, in our little way, contributes to the long term thrive-ability of our species on the planet. ”
What’s our greatest accomplishment? “Purchasing more local produce every year for 10 years is our greatest accomplishment. We have also won several business competitions, awards, and grants as well as four Good Food Awards and we are currently a finalist for our 5th!”
How creating a safe space is part of OlyKraut’s commitment to “B The Change” as a B Corp: “We hire a lot of queer and gender queer people because not everywhere is cool for folks to work at and we want to be a safe space. We know that awesome people come in all forms and we are a better company for having a more diverse team. ”
If you want to become a B Corp… “Build your business on your values first, then a B Corp will give you the seal of approval! Also, put effort into good recordkeeping.”
Why B Corps make for a better tomorrow: “I hope its influence will grow and B Corps will become more and more common for businesses to do better in the world. I think it’s starting to happen but if we can see meaningful change that isn’t green-washable (or B-Washable?), at the large corporation level, that would be amazing. I think that more people are demanding better practices from the businesses they interact with and I believe that it’s people working in this movement, making that option visible who are to thank for that.”
About Sash Sunday, Co-Founder of OlyKraut
Sash Sunday was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest and co-founded OlyKraut, a raw sauerkraut company, in 2008. When she’s not shredding cabbages, you’ll find her running with her dog in the hills around the South Puget Sound. She studied Food, Food Systems, and Sustainable Agriculture at The Evergreen State College and earned her MBA in Sustainable Systems at Presidio University in Seattle.
This has been a Fantastic B Corps post, MyCorporation’s salute to the entity that gives back to business and society. Join us biweekly for a glimpse at the entrepreneurs using their small business to “B The Change” in this global movement for good.