Show #156 – Where is your money and what is it doing for the world?

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Our show supporter this month is…

Weleda started in 1921 and is now the world’s leading manufacturer of certified natural and organic skincare and anthroposophic medicines. They have always farmed organically, putting the planet before profit, looking at the long-term sustainable benefits their business can deliver to help support people, wildlife and biodiversity. A conscious approach to sustainability underpins all of the brand’s actions. According to Rudolf Steiner, the founder of Weleda, “we must do our best to support an adequate living for everyone today, without compromising the needs of future generations”. Weleda strives to achieve this by protecting and respecting their environment and its biodiversity, by treating and remunerating employees, partners and communities fairly, and by building an ethical economy which creates, rather than diminishes, value. Weleda was recently voted the most sustainable cosmetics brand by consumers in Germany. This is a finding of the Cosmetics 2019 sustainability study compiled by Facit Research. You can learn more about their sustainability vision and new campaign here: https://www.weleda.com.au/you-are-nature

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And onto this week’s show!

In this week’s show we talk about the enormous power we have in the way we invest our money: Ethical investing for the world we want to see! (This episode is not sponsored nor am I personally endorsing this exact investment fund as the one you should transfer to! It’s simply a discussion about ethical investing, highlighting the great work one company is doing as an example) From today, what I hope this show will do is have us all ask ourselves: What does ethical investment look like for you on the micro level in terms of what’s going in your shopping basket and where is your money invested right now when it comes to finance, superannuation, your 401K etc? And then finally to look and ask: is there a disconnect? Adam Verwey is the founder of Future Super and an experienced ethical fund manager and Kirstin Hunter is the Managing Director and COO, passionate about advancing women’s rights and financial opportunity. Together we all discuss the power in where we put our money and it’s a wonderful discussion that will leave you with great tools to start asking powerful questions of the institutions where you have your money right now as well as researching the best aligned options when it comes to your values. Enjoy the show and as always, you’ll find all the resources and the show supporter offer over at lowtoxlife.com/podcast Alexx x

The questions I asked Adam & Kirstin:

  • Let’s start with a little about each of you / your passion for both ethics and sound investment/financial freedom. 
  • Adam – How did FS come to be? How did you attract the first customers into FS and how long did it take to establish reliable deliverables for prospective investors compared to long-time existing fund options? 
  • A lot of places in the world it’s optional to save for your retirement: In AU we have compulsory schemes. How does this affect our economy/retirees? 
  • Kirstin – You’re the chair of the Youth Food Movement – Absolutely love what they do and have collaborated over the years a couple of times. How do we have meaningful conversations with young people about where to put their money / how to decide their super fund instead of going with the fund their employer proposes as so many of us do when we’re just starting out? 
  • Why do you think Australia still find it hard to switch away from fossil fuels and our engagement with dealing with climate change is so slow? Is it as simple as vested interests or is it more complex than that? 
  • What’s so wonderful about FS and if I can say a couple of the other ethical funds out there is that it transcends the ethics of now and the creation of a better future but it is a genuinely exciting financial conversation to be having: Can we talk about the importance of investment managers including a focus on sustainability, climate change and environmental factors in their analysis – not just for ethical reasons, also simply because it is good risk management and at the heart of long-term thinking, essential when it comes to funding our retirement? A lot to unpack there but basically a general conversation about ethics + financially sound vs the current govt action of “To be financially sound we have to ignore the ethics”. 
  • Why is superannuation such a hard issue to talk about when it relates to people’s money and invested to support their future?  What kinds of open conversations should we be starting with our family members? Our kids? 
  • What’s different with your members?
  • What are some of the benefits of being a small super fund? 
  • How is Future Super shaking things up when it comes to super? 
  • Are you able to report on the impact you’re having? Is there some sort of impact measurement structure across the main areas you focus on as a fund? 
  • What are some of the questions people should ask when considering where their money goes with superannuation? 
  • What are your respective passion projects in investment if different, where you’ve seen incredible change through divestment/positive investment? 
  • Are we seeing an ethical investment change in the overall global investment market? 
  • What is the easiest way to recommend to our international audience listening today, how they go about connecting to ethical fund resources near them? 

A couple of listener questions that we’ll ask towards the end: 

  • Advice for anyone who hasn’t got a huge super due to being self employed and having a family and now mid 40’s and has never really given it too much thought. Also trying to understand the life insurance side and if super coverage is enough.
  • How to approach the conversation of moving funds with a resistant partner?

 

 

Other helpful links:

To learn more about Future Super’s impact, go here: https://www.myfuturesuper.com.au

Follow them on Instagram @future_super or on Facebook

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Enjoy the show and thanks again for taking the time to rate and review the show on your app – it’s like tipping the bartender and it means the world.

Low Tox. Happy us. Happy planet

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