City Hippy

The diary of our struggle to live a green and fair life.

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We are dedicated to exploring how to live a greener and more ethical life. City Hippy is a growing collective of writers bringing you two types of content:

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Wednesday, January 18, 2006


City Hippy loves interviewing people that inspire us. We get lots of great info from them about living a greener and fairer life PLUS we get to hear their thoughts on a range of other topics.

We recently had the honour to interview Craig Sams.

Craig is quite possibly the most successful greentrepreneur on the planet, at the very least, one of a seriously successful few.

Craig not only started Green & Black's, producer of arguably the finest organic Chocolate the world has ever tasted but he also created Whole Earth foods, purveyors of a range of natural food products free from artificial preservatives and additives.

Both have now been sold and yet Craig is still a busy man. He has many proverbial fingers in various vegan pies and we wanted to find out more.

This interview is presented across a series of posts with only one Q&A in each post to break it down a bit. Not a cheap attempt to keep you coming back we promise (although we like that too) but just to prevent huge posts which take ages to read.

We asked Craig a variety of questions including:
  • what he thinks the UK should do for energy in the future (here's a clue, he thinks one of the options is satanic - hmmm wonder which one)
  • why he believes progress to trade justice is hamperered by corruption
  • why he sold to Cadbury's and why he believes this deal was/is a good thing for ethical businesses and finally
  • how he would rule the world
So let's kick things off:

CityHippy: Hi Craig, first of all thanks for the interview. Pleasure to speak with are an inspiration to us and many others. OK first question I have is why did you start Green&Blacks & Whole Earth?

Craig Sams: I started Yin Yang Ltd in 1967 as a macrobiotic restaurant. With my brother Gregory we grew it into retail (Ceres Grain Shop and Ceres Bakery), a macrobiotic workingman’s café (Green Genes, 1971), a wholesaling and manufacturing operation (Harmony Foods, Whole Earth, from 1971). We started up originally to spread the macrobiotic message, which is about eating mostly grains and vegetables, limited amounts of the rest, balanced diet, justice, organic food, no nightshade foods, no additives or chemicals in food, healthy lifestyle, because we believed that this was the most effective way to bring about real political change. When people are healthy then society develops in a healthy way, I still believe it.

We buy that. The connections between food and politics are numerous. Healthy body, healthy mind, healthy society?

Next we find out what Craig thinks was the biggest barrier in setting those businesses up and how he overcame them.



Additional: Click here to read part two of the series

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At 10:35 AM, Blogger Maya said...

A great post :-) Thanks Al...have been going through your bookmarks for everything green, and now I'd like to ask for a little guidance for online organic grocery or green shops in France? I know it's out of your scope but maybe you know a little more than me to start with...Thanks again. I'm at a lost here in Antibes...


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