Daily CSR
Daily CSR

Daily CSR
Daily news about corporate social responsibility, ethics and sustainability

Whole Foods Market hosts fusion event aimed at alleviating poverty


On March 17, 2023, Whole Foods Market's flagship store in Austin, Texas, will host an official SXSW event to benefit Whole Planet Foundation, a Whole Foods Market non-profit dedicated to poverty alleviation through microcredit loans in the United States and around the world where the company sources products.

The event will be a soul-nourishing synthesis of music, technology, health-conscious gastronomy, connectivity, and social interaction. The event, presented by Bitchin' Sauce, KeVita, Andalou Naturals, and Mineral Fusion, will bring together artists, brands, and innovators to support a worthwhile cause.

Whole Planet Foundation supports microcredit, which are small loans made without a formal contract or collateral to microentrepreneurs living in poverty in order to generate income for themselves and their families.

This official SXSW event is perfectly timed during Women's History Month because the most marginalized entrepreneurs are women, who can create or expand a business, often from home, with a microcredit loan.

Joy Stoddard, Director of Development and Outreach for Whole Planet Foundation, emphasized that, “This year’s event has already raised $30,000 to support Whole Planet Foundation’s impactful programs 25 cities in the U.S. including Austin and 80 other countries. These funds will go directly to support an additional 1,000 people – women entrepreneurs and their family members - with income-generating opportunities.”  

The current Whole Planet Foundation-supported average first loan size around the world is $180, with a 97% repayment rate.

This year's music lineup is carefully curated to showcase the depth and diversity of modern music. Starting things off will be NYC singer-songwriter Jessica Carter Altman, followed by performances throughout the day by rising SoCal alt-rock trio L.A. Edwards, German dream-pop stylings of Philine Sonny to NYC-based hyper-pop duo Frost Children to Catalonian folk-pop composer Nria Graham to Alternative K-pop collective Balming Tiger (known for their collaboration with RM of BTS) to gregarious Canadian TikTok sensation TALK.

SLC indie rockers Krooked Kings, esoteric AZ power popsters Ponderosa Grove, Gibson Guitars' endorsed punk blues rocker Devon Thompson, and Ric Wilson, who recently released the EW&F/Arrested Development-inspired heater "Pay It No Mind" featuring Chromeo and A-Trak, round out the eclectic lineup.

More than forty brand partners, including EVOLVE Plant-Based Protein, Gimme Seaweed, MaryRuth's Organics, Nova Naturals, nutpods, ORIGIN Spring Water, RightRice®, and RXBAR, are supporting the event.

Sponsor of the Presentation KeVita has long been a supporter of Whole Planet Foundation. Monica Hardy, National Sales Leader at KeVita, explains, Whole Planet Foundation is dear to our hearts as their programs support mostly women entrepreneurs who grow, build and dream. KeVita was founded by a pioneering woman Chakra Earthsong who has always had a strong desire to discover and create new, innovative approaches to wellness. As such, we are so aligned with Whole Planet Foundation’s mission!

Supporters sampling products at the event include Applegate, Betty Buzz, Bubbies Ice Cream, Cleveland Kitchen, Culture POP Soda, Death Wish Coffee, De Lune, FAGE, FLOW, Forager Project, GoGo Squeez, GoodPop, Grandy Organics, Honey Mama's, lil'gourmets, LOVE CORN, Mauna Loa Macadamia Milk Ice Cream, Mother Kombucha, MUSH Overnight Oats, Oishii, Petit Pot, Repurpose, Shire's, Spinster Sisters Co, Sunwink, Tia Lupita and WishGarden Herbs. ALO, Bluapple, Bossa Bars, D'Angelico Guitars, Health-Ade Kombucha, Hiyo, Lopaus Point, Mad Hippie, Saint James Tea, Seattle Gummy Company, SweetLeaf, and Tea Botanics are among the other supporters.

This year marks the exciting return of the event to SXSW 2023, one of the most important weeks in music, film, entertainment, and technology. Manic Monkee and Planet LA Records are among the original co-creators of the Quantum Collective, which organized the first showcase in 2012.

The Whole Foods Market Lamar location in Austin, Texas is located at 525 N. Lamar Boulevard. The showcase is free and open to all ages, with priority given to SXSW badge holders.