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Honest Tea remains true to healthy roots

“We believe that healthier and happier employees are more productive,” said Chloe Rosenthal, the company’s human resources director.

Each year, Honest Tea spends a few hundred dollars per employee on health and fitness activities, Rosenthal said, but the company doesn’t pay much attention to how those programs affect health insurance costs.

“We’ve never tracked cost-savings or anything like that,” she said. “Our workforce is very, very young without a lot of medical expenses. We don’t do this for the [return on investment] at all.”

The largest wellness-related expense for Honest Tea is the “certified wellness coach” who organizes company-wide fitness challenges and works with employees one-on-one to achieve their health goals.

The coach also leads evening yoga lessons — employees clear out desks, lay down mats and practice yoga in the office. The coach also offers 30-minute “business-casual” yoga during the workday, Rosenthal said.

Sound fun?

That’s just the beginning. Here are some other examples of Honest Tea’s commitment to employee health:

Every quarter, the company mails each employee a $30 gift card to Whole Foods (their biggest customer).

Honest Tea recently held a health fair, where each employee could receive a comprehensive fitness assessment: body fat screenings, endurance tests and so forth.

The company buys holiday gifts for each employee, who can choose to receive the “health option,” Rosenthal said. This year, employees received a wearable activity-tracker.

Every Tuesday, a “ginormous basket of seasonal, organic fruit” gets delivered to the office,” Rosenthal said. “People love that.”

In August, the company sold its billionth bottle of Honest Tea, Rosenthal said. So naturally, they celebrated by buying each employee a bicycle. Good ones too, made by Jamis Bicycles. Not all employees wanted one, but Honest Tea shipped out about 50 of them. (Jamis was trying to clear its warehouse, Rosenthal said, so they offered to sell the bikes for about 50 percent off the $400 sticker price.)

“You can’t be Honest Tea without a wellness program,” Rosenthal said. “It’s threaded throughout the organization; it’s everywhere.”