Why he’s a 2019 Top 40 Under 40: He helps consumers make a difference with their everyday purchases.
If you’ve ever purchased a bottle of water with “EARTH” on the label, then you’re already familiar with Matt Moreau. Moreau co-founded Earth Group in 2009 alongside Kori Chilibeck (Top 40 Under 40 Class of 2011), with the idea of giving 100 per cent of the profits from selling bottled water to programs that help people around the world have access to safe, clean water and food, and education.
After relentlessly calling, emailing, and mailing the United Nations, someone from Geneva finally called Chilibeck back to grant him a meeting at an office in Ottawa. A one-year contract turned into a long-term partnership and, every year, Earth Group has been able to increase the amount it donates with products in over 700 locations. All of the profits go to the UN World Food Programme, which provides meals to school children and helps implement food security initiatives.
“We hope people recognize that they can make a difference with their everyday purchases,” Moreau says.
This career has been a natural fit for Moreau, who became interested in social enterprise at the age of 12 when his family travelled to Ecuador on a medical mission started by his parents.
“We’re so lucky to be born into opportunity, I think we all have a responsibility to give back, whether it’s something local in your community or nationally, internationally,” Moreau says.
After 14 years with this business, Moreau’s most memorable experiences include site visits to see the projects that Earth Group is funding.
“The human spirit is so strong, and everyone is always so thankful for the opportunities that the World Food Programme has given them, whether that’s job creation, funding schools, funding food programs, or funding water wells. Being welcome into a community is so humbling.”
What is your priority reno project for 2021?
15%Minor fixes — painting, lighting, etc.
15%No plans to renovate
This article appears in the November 2019 issue of Avenue Edmonton.