“WE REGARD OUR STAFF AS OUR MOST VALUABLE ASSET”
Sarah Driver, Rathfinny Co-Owner
How do you maintain 380,000 vines by hand all year round? How do you run a large-scale hospitality offering? How do you make world-class wines and sell them to the finest establishments in the world whilst supporting charitable causes at home? There’s no short cut. It’s all about building relationships with our staff and community.
WHAT IS THE TRIPLE BOTTOM LINE?
The Triple Bottom Line is a framework that calculates a business’ success based not on just economic achievement, but social and environmental impact as well. When applying for B Corp certification, we took the time to evaluate the Rathfinny mission, company ethics and engagement with our stakeholders. We changed our legal documents to embed these responsibilities into our culture.
OUR MISSION STATEMENT
We worked as a team to refresh our mission statement and reflect our true intentions. We were keen to focus on the word ‘kind’ as it resonates with how we like to conduct business.
WE ARE COMMITTED TO PRODUCING EXCEPTIONAL WINES AND EXPERIENCES, ENJOYED THE WORLD OVER, THAT REVEAL THE CHARACTER OF OUR FAMILY ESTATE IN SUSSEX, USING METHODS THAT ARE KIND TO OUR LAND, PEOPLE, COMMUNITY AND WIDER ENVIRONMENT.
CODE OF ETHICS
We’ve produced a Staff Handbook that reflects who we are as a business and includes robust policies covering everything from the environment and procurement to the menopause, breast-feeding at work and internships. It also sets out the way we work and behave. We actively engage in conversations with our staff about the benefits they are entitled to and continue to listen to ways in which we can enrich and support their lives.
INVESTING IN THE FUTURE
We truly believe in investing in the future of English wine as well as providing regular training to our staff. We enrol many of our staff on WSET courses and support their career development with regular appraisals and training opportunities. Elsewhere, we’re proud to have sponsored the ‘Rathfinny Research Laboratory’ at Plumpton College, to enable further research to be carried out to benefit the English wine industry.
The Rathfinny project is not just about making wine: we are committed to supporting the wider ambitions of the English wine industry and that means nurturing the skills it requires to fulfil its potential. Mark Driver, Rathfinny Co-owner
Each year we ask our staff to nominate charities close to their hearts so we can support with donations and fundraising initiatives. Support can come in all shapes and sizes. For example, in 2022, we held a charitable 10k and half marathon race around our Vineyard in aid of WOLO Foundation.
Find out more about our Charities
Our Community Goals
- To organize a round table with other Sussex Vineyards to discuss how we can collaborate and support each other on this journey to becoming more sustainable.
- Improve community engagement with the wildlife on the Estate including the provision of bio-diversity tours.
- Diversity and Inclusion –The plan is to set up a group with staff from all areas of the business to champion and undertake training to improve our knowledge on the subject.
- Broadly speaking we have accessible facilities on our Vineyard, and we want to make more of this by including dedicated tours for people with visual and hearing impairments.
- Explore apprenticeship opportunities.
- We will support three to five charities each year.
WORKING WITH SUPPLIERS
We take it upon ourselves to do our due diligence when it comes to working with new suppliers. We’ve developed a new procurement policy, so we rigorously question ourselves when investing in new products. It’s not a bad guide for all of us when we’re thinking of buying something new!
OUR GOLDEN RULES FOR BUYING NEW
- Can an existing product be repaired or refurbished?
- Can an existing product be modified?
- Can this product be hired or borrowed?
- Can this product be shared within Rathfinny?
- Can this product be purchased second hand, refurbished or renewed?
- Where does this product, including key components and raw materials, come from originally?
- Does this country cause concern for environment or human rights?
- What impact does using this product have on the environment?
- Consider: Energy, water, emissions, wastewater, solid waste, noise, local environment
- How long will this product last?
- What will happen to it after its use?