We are proudly B Corp Certified

Johnstons of Elgin photo of Hopeman Beach with waves crashing announcing our B Corp status
Discover Johnstons of Elgin SVG

We are incredibly proud to announce that we are now a Certified B Corporation. Following stringent assessment, we join a community of over 7,669 businesses globally working to build a more inclusive and sustainable economy. 

WHAT IS B CORP?

B Corp Certification demonstrates that a business meets high standards of verified performance, accountability, and transparency, from employee benefits and charitable giving to supply chain practices and input materials. 

CEO Chris Gaffney said, ‘Johnstons of Elgin are proud to announce that we are now a Certified B Corporation. There are many certifications and membership organisations doing a lot of good work, but what makes the B Corp movement special is the ‘Mission Lock’. This goes to the heart of the purpose of the organisation and requires changes to our founding documents, our Articles of Association.

'Companies have a legal obligation to look after the interests of their shareholders. This is, of course, important, as a business can only do good in the world if it is thriving and making returns for shareholders and profits for re-investment, but it does not fully reflect the importance of other stakeholders. Becoming a B Corp requires a commitment to a legal change to reflect the importance of looking after people and the planet, as well as profit, the 'triple bottom line'.

'Johnstons of Elgin have therefore changed our articles so that the company is run ‘for the benefit of its members as a whole and through its business and operations, to have a material positive impact on society and the environment.’

Johnstons of Elgin craftsperson hand stitching the label in a green sweater
Johnstons of Elgin craftsman with hand in a bale of pure cashmere fibre
Johnstons of Elgin Mill in Elgin taken by a drone looking over Garvald House and the grounds of our vertical textile mill
Image on Johnstons of Elgin website of a river flowing through green tree lined land

MEASURING ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT

Unlike other business certifications, B Lab is unique in its ability to measure a company's entire social and environmental impact.

  • As a Certified B Corporation, we are legally required to consider the impact of our decisions on all our stakeholders, including workers, communities, customers, suppliers, and the environment.
  • Being B Corp means we have passed rigorous assessment to ensure we demonstrate high social and environmental performance. 
  • We must be transparent, allowing information about our performance measured against B Lab's standards to be publicly available on our B Corp profile on B Lab's website. 
Johnstons of Elgin employees in our Hawick and Elgin mills smiling and laughing

MORE THAN TWO CENTURIES OF COMMUNITY FOCUS

Our workforce and our communities have always been central to our business. And it makes us very proud to achieve B Corp status in the same year we celebrate our 225th anniversary. 

Chris explained that our founders were every bit as focused on our stakeholders as we remain today. 

'We are very fortunate at Johnstons of Elgin to work with enlightened owners who have always recognised the wider community good. Indeed, when our founder Alexander Johnston retired in 1845, his son James wrote, 'for upwards of fifty years he carried out the business of woollen manufacture, with credit, if not much profit for himself, and much benefit to the community'. The current generation of our family owners have been hugely supportive of our ambition to become a B Corp, as it is a natural fit with their values and the way we do business.’

THE JOURNEY CONTINUES

We are delighted to announce our recent certification, which follows our receipt of the Queen's Award for Enterprise for our work around sustainability. However, have always known that minimising our environmental impact is a continuous process. 

Chris said, ‘The team at Johnstons of Elgin have done great work to get us to the point where we could meet the rest of the stringent criteria required to become a B Corp, and this, in turn, has made us a better company. There remains much work to do, but it is very fulfilling as a Chief Executive and a Board to be so clearly empowered by our family owners to make decisions that will continue us on a journey to becoming a fully sustainable company.'

You can read more about our sustainability journey on our Sustainability Hub.

Find out more about B Corp Certification here.