Alexandra Birtles: The Hatch Graduate Promoting Ethical Consumerism

Picture of Alexandra Birtles, co-founder of In Good Company. Alex is a white woman with brown hair and glasses. She has her hair up in a bun and is wearing a green dress.

Have you ever wanted to be a more ethical consumer, but the hoops you have to jump through to find a business that is actually sustainable and ethical from the beginning of the production line inhibit your journey? 

We’ve all been there.

It can be exhausting filtering out all the companies trying to jump on the “sustainable” trend whilst continuing to underpay their workers, or producing thousands of tonnes of waste each year.

That’s where Alexandra Birtles’ In Good Company comes in.

In Good Company - Your Ethical Business Guide

“Look, there are fundamental things that need to change. There are definitely parts of the system that are really broken. We have been consuming way too much. But of course there are things that we need. We’re all humans, right? There are things we want. So if you can change and funnel some of that into good causes, then that's a brilliant thing to do."

Picture of In Good Company team. There are three women, two white and one brown, and two white men.
The In Good Company Team

One of the things that is amazing about the mission driven business sector is that there are a lot of different ways that companies can be good. But the drawback is it can be really confusing for consumers. And with the rise of greenwashing, it can be very hard to know who to trust because everybody is claiming to be sustainable or conscious.

In Good Company was founded by Alexandra Birtles and Sarah Kingston to make ethical consumption easier and more sustainable.

They work with well established ethical, eco-friendly and good business accreditation providers, such as B Corp, Living Wage Foundation, and Sustainable Restaurant Association to highlight businesses committed to doing good.

The Good Coffee Shop Guide

We wanted to make it really easy for people. So when you get out of a tube station in London and you're like, "I want to grab a coffee", and pull out your phone - instead of just going to the nearest shop that you see on your phone or around you, you can use the app and you’ll find a brilliant coffee company that does really good coffee and is also doing good for people and the planet.

The majority of us enjoy going out for a cup of coffee or a hot drink for a small treat to break up the working day, or to catch up with a friend.

Alex and Sarah wanted to elevate the everyday experience of going out for a cup of coffee by making it easier for people to have a new type of connection with their favourite cafe and know that their money was being put into good hands.

We really want to showcase that coffee is a sector that has real innovation when it comes to the environment and also social causes.

In this Coffee Guide, you can find local cafes who are actively employing people less likely to find work such as those experiencing homelessness, ex-offenders, or people with disabilities.

You can also find sustainable coffee businesses who are commited to being low or zero waste.

Fancy a cup of coffee?

Check out In Good Company's Coffee Guide with over 100 of the best coffee shops in London leading the way in ethical caffeine for you.

Alexandra Birtles with Hatch

There were loads of things that Hatch covered that I had no idea about in terms of what I needed to do as a business. For me, it was about the opportunity to have a really structured approach to learning, but also the space to really consider things that I maybe hadn't thought about at all.

Picture of Alexandra Birtles, Co-founder of In Good Company. Alex is a white woman with brown hair and glasses. Her hair is up in a bun and she is wearing an olive green dress.

Alex left the corporate world to start her business and brought with her useful insights on money and consumerist culture. 

We can’t deny the damaging effects of consumerism. Changing this culture however, seems near-impossible. 

That’s why Alex and Sarah decided to bring power back to the consumer and make it easier to make ethical decisions when spending money amidst the crowd of big corporate greenwashing campaigns.

Alexandra decided to join the Hatch Launchpad programme for an opportunity to take a step back and build a really solid foundation for her business.

I had heard really great things about Hatch and I think when you're starting a business, it's an incredibly daunting and potentially very lonely journey. Even with a co-founder who I'm very lucky to be in partnership with, it's just the one or the two of you trying to figure things out.

During the Hatch programme, Alex was able to focus on things that would help her run her business such as marketing, operations, finance, and more.

Her favourite aspect of the programme was the amazing founders she got to know along the way in her cohort.

“They were great fun, they were intelligent, they were diverse.”

Everybody was hugely committed to what they were trying to do, which is really inspiring. Coming from a corporate background, I didn’t have a network of entrepreneur friends that I came into this with. It can be really helpful to find your people.”

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