The Coca-Cola - Honest Tea Deal: Promoting Sustainability or Corporate Greenwashing?
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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.
In February 2008, the Coca-Cola Company acquired an equity stake of 40% in Honest Tea. The agreement between the companies stated that Coca-Cola can acquire the remaining stake after three years. Seth Goldman maintained that Coca-Cola's acquisition of the stake would benefit Honest Tea, as it would strengthen the company's distribution capabilities. However, customers who lent their support to Honest Tea over the years were not happy with this deal. They said that Honest Tea was selling out to Coca-Cola, which had a history of environmental and labor abuses in some of its international markets. Some of the industry experts were of the view that Coca-Cola may discontinue Honest Tea's sustainable business practices.
» Understand sustainability as a corporate strategy with reference to the incorporation and operations of Honest Tea.
Honest Tea, Coca-Cola Company, Organic Products, Corporate Sustainability, Corporate Greenwashing, Social Responsibility, Bottled Organic Tea, Seth Goldman, Barry Nalebuff, Environmental Sustainability, Organic Farming, Distribution, Sustainable Development, Fair Trade Certified Products, Environmental Footprint, Renewable Energy, Carbon Credits, Economic Viability
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