Our Story Began with a Food Fight
In 2006, award-winning documentary filmmaker Amy Kalafa traveled the US in search of sustainable school food systems that educate kids about real food and serve meals made from fresh, locally sourced ingredients. Who knew this would be taken as heresy?
At the premiere of her film Two Angry Moms in Fairfield, Connecticut, a heated argument between the lunch ladies and a group of angry PTA moms erupted. Sustainable food advocate Analiese Paik was one of those moms, and she was fed up. The school district’s food service director insisted that the menu of highly processed, junky food, and particularly giant cookies, was perfectly healthy. Her priorities were firmly on the side of a balanced budget over a balanced diet.
Analiese would soon “go to a happy place” to create a sustainable food destination for the Fairfield County community. In 2009 she founded the award-winning Fairfield Green Food Guide to help consumers easily find local, sustainable food and give voice to the burgeoning local food movement.
Analiese and Amy were at the forefront of the local food movement that championed farmers markets, school gardens and farm to table dining across the country. They are gratified by the many successes they’ve seen since that raucous movie premiere.
…a decade after their fateful first encounter, Amy and Analiese have joined forces to create an online destination and community dedicated to every aspect of sustainable living.
From Advocates to Entrepreneurs
These days, they’re not seen as rebels. They’re embraced as award-winning, visionary entrepreneurs forging an ecosystem that fosters sustainable business practices and sustainable communities.
Why Sustainne? The Extra “ne” Stands for “New Economy”
Sustainne \ sə-ˈstān \ The dictionary defines “sustain” like this: “Strengthen or support physically or mentally, to uphold, to cause or allow something to continue for a long period of time.”
Our mission is to unite, nurture, and grow a community dedicated to sustainable living.
Our vision is to help create and sustain a prosperous New Economy that uses natural capital* to support human needs and regenerate natural resources for the future.
Replacing Planned Obsolescence
Our generation grew up in the era of “planned obsolescence,” a marketing concept that provided manufacturers an opportunity to sell consumers a new and improved gadget every few years. Current generations now suffer the devastating and unintended consequence of this disposable economy as they deal with air and water pollution, declining public health, and the growing realization that the earth’s natural resources are not infinite or truly “free” for the taking.
Putting People First
We also grew up in an economy that provided stable jobs for a decent percentage of the workforce; this too has changed. Now the only choice for many Americans is employment in the “gig” economy, with few benefits and no safety net. The three pillars of the Sustainne platform are People, Planet and Prosperity. We put People first because we believe that businesses should provide living wages and fair treatment to their employees, and we aim to help consumers find and support businesses that share those values.
Rooted in Sustainability
Sustainne connects consumers who value sustainability with businesses that stand out in their efforts to be socially and environmentally responsible. We network our business members with one another to strengthen and grow their ecosystem through collaboration and innovation. Our learning programs teach businesses sustainability practices that benefit profits, the people in our communities, and our planet. We recognize the vital role our Community Partners play in advancing sustainability, and are committed to deepening their social impact through regular interaction with the Sustainne community.
*Natural Capital – human and natural resources
Meet the Founders:
Analiese Paik is a sustainable food advocate and founder of the Fairfield Green Food Guide, an award-winning digital news publication dedicated to empowering Fairfield County consumers to eat more locally and sustainably. Analiese has strengthened the sustainable food movement through her publications and events, as a GMO labeling bill advocate, through her service on the advisory board of the CT DOA’s Farm-to-Chef Program, and as an advisor to Slow Food Metro North, where she previously served as a board member.
Paik holds an MBA in Finance and has worked in marketing management positions in various sectors of the financial services industry, including Vice President of the New Business Group at Lehman Brothers. She is also a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education in New York City, and studied wine at the International Wine Center in New York City.
She is the recipient of the 2016 and 2015 Morris Media Green Award Honorable Mention, 2012 Slow Food Metro North Snail of Approval Award, 2013 and 2011 Green Coast Award, and has received the Constant Contact All Star Award for eight consecutive years for excellence in email marketing.
Amy Kalafa is a sustainability strategist and media expert specializing in connecting organizational strategy with sustainability initiatives, social and environmental impact and storytelling. A life-long environmentalist, holistic health and sustainability advocate, Amy believes that successful and sustainable businesses and non-profit organizations are key to creating a thriving regenerative economy.
For more than 25 years Amy has consulted with and produced media for businesses and organizations, increasing their visibility and maximizing their impact.
An award-winning documentary filmmaker (Two Angry Moms) and published book author (Lunch Wars), Amy is a sought-after public speaker at conferences, universities and in the media. She has been interviewed on NPR’s Justice Talking and Positive Discipline, Fox News Tonight, CNN’s Your Bottom Line and Good Morning America. She and her work have been featured on the cover of USA Today, in The New York Times, Redbook, People Magazine, Huffington Post and on Rachel Ray and CBS’s The Doctors. Amy holds an MBA in Sustainability from Bard.