Can you build a successful and fun brand around serious social justice topics? Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield of Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream join Billy Shore to talk about feeding hungry kids, police reform, and how businesses can make a difference on social issues. “Passing legislation that is going to reduce child poverty in the US by 40% is huge – it’s pretty much the best news I’ve heard in quite a long time,” says Greenfield about the American Rescue Plan, the latest COVID relief package that includes critical provisions that will help fight the hunger crisis. Ben & Jerry’s is also focused on police reform through the Campaign to End Qualified Immunity. “What we need to seize about this moment is the issue of racial justice… The reality is if we are not able to pivot from protest to policy right now, all those protests were for nothing,” Cohen believes.
Billy Shore asks the ice cream makers and activists about how they built a successful business while also taking stands on controversial social justice issues. “Conventional wisdom when we started was that it’s not possible for a for-profit business to take stands on social issues… and that it was going to have a negative impact on profits. Ben & Jerry’s proved that’s not the case. It was just a bunch of self-serving bullshit from the business community that didn’t want to put energy into helping deal with social problems,” says Cohen. “We’ve always had a very similar world view, and similar values,” says Greenfield of their partnership. “For example, the issue is so clear around police reform and racial justice. Something needs to be done.”
Join us for an inspiring discussion with the builders of an iconic brand who have always used their influence to address important problems in our society.