Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network

Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network

Educational Ranch Conserves Natural Habitats while producing Sustainably-produced Foods


Basalt, Co, FEBRUARY 11, 2016 Following a rigorous auditing process, Certified Wildlife Friendly® is pleased to recognize Aspen Center for Environmental Studies (ACES) at Rock Bottom Ranch for their work to prioritize habitat conservation alongside agricultural production and education. Rock Bottom Ranch (RBR), which is operated as a site of the environmental education non-profit, ACES, implements carefully orchestrated production systems that mimic natural biological cycles and allow adjacent ecosystems and wildlife to thrive. Located between the Crown of Mt. Sopris and the Roaring Fork River in Basalt, Colorado with Aspen’s iconic Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness as a backdrop, RBR is the first farm in Colorado to meet Certified Wildlife Friendly® criteria for land and livestock management, with special focus on biodiversity and habitat conservation.

Aspen Center for Environmental Studies

Burros enjoy the view at Rock Bottom Ranch Photo: Aspen Center for Environmental Studies

According to site Director Jason Smith, RBR’s operations seek to show how wildlife, natural landscapes, and domestic agriculture are both possible and healthy. “Agricultural production has a rich history in the American West and small farms and local food systems are gaining noticeable momentum,” says Smith. “The scalable and replicable sustainable production methods we use at RBR demonstrate the possibilities for productive local food systems in high-altitude climates like the Roaring Fork Valley, which are often located at the intersection between agricultural and wild lands.” Rock Bottom Ranch is taking it a step further to show how production systems and land management techniques can actually benefit natural habitats and area wildlife.

Aspen Center for Environmental Studies

A Heritage Breed Pig at Rock Bottom Ranch Photo: Aspen Center for Environmental Studies

At Rock Bottom Ranch, Smith emphasizes care for the land as a primary responsibility: “The Ranch’s multi-species rotational grazing system promotes nutrient cycling that results in healthy, sustainable forage for our domestic livestock as well as our wild neighbors.” The system also saves on equipment, fuel, fertilizer, and labor costs, both in terms of agricultural production and habitat restoration. For example, RBR’s heritage breed pigs will occasionally assist with on-site restoration projects: under careful watch the pigs are allowed to root, or dig in the soil, a natural instinct that creates disturbance—like the fire and flood regimes of the past—in some of the Ranch’s mature cottonwood forests. The result has been the regeneration of stands of young trees, which are prime habitat for countless native wildlife species.

“Certified Wildlife Friendly®, is excited to welcome RBR to the Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network,” says Executive Director Julie Stein. RBR’s methods benefit species such as mountain lion, black bear, bobcat, coyotes, elk, deer, and numerous birds of prey. Wetlands on-site also attract myriad migratory birds like the Yellow-headed Blackbird, as well as Great Blue Heron, White-faced Ibis, Trumpeter Swans and many other species. “Following the reviewed auditing process, which assesses criteria from careful stewardship of rangelands to proactive practices to protect livestock to habitat restoration, RBR joins peers around the world who implement best practices for biodiversity conservation and business.” RBR is the 10th farm the United States that holds Certified Wildlife Friendly® status.

For Smith, who “came to farming backwards” following an upbringing in restaurants and six years as chef at Aspen’s famed Little Nell, ACES at Rock Bottom Ranch is a laboratory in which sustainable agriculture and wildlife conservation go hand-in-hand. Smith says, “We’re honored that our efforts align with the Certified Wildlife Friendly® mission and look forward to seeing more farms in Colorado acknowledged for similar work.” In addition to its Wildlife Friendly® certification, ACES at Rock Bottom Ranch is certified for its high-welfare animal care by the Animal Welfare Approved program.

Certified Wildlife Friendly® looks forward to working with other farms in Colorado and throughout the American West towards a collaborative balance between wildlife conservation and agricultural production.


About Aspen Center for Environmental Studies and Rock Bottom Ranch

Aspen Center for Environmental Studies (ACES), a non-profit organization founded in 1968, provides programs in ecological literacy, sustainable agriculture, forest health, ecosystem restoration, and civic leadership for everyone from school children to leaders and decision makers. Partnership programs with 48 regional schools helps teachers meet state science standards while offering local children the opportunity to explore their outdoor environment. For more information about Aspen Center for Environmental Studies, visit: www.aspennature.org.

ACES at Rock Bottom Ranch (RBR), a 113 acre working ranch and educational farm, is one of four sites operated by the organization. RBR is western Colorado’s “school” for teaching people of all ages how to grow healthy local, sustainable food. In the winter months, RBR is open to the public Monday – Friday, with guided farm tours on Wednesdays and Fridays at 11AM. Other programs include Farm to Table dinners, cooking demonstrations, kids’ camps, and more. Sustainably-raised lamb, pork, poultry, eggs, produce, and cut flowers are available directly from the Ranch and at the weekly Aspen and Basalt farmer’s markets in season. To learn more about ACES at Rock Bottom Ranch and available products, contact Smith at jsmith@aspennature.org or 970-927-6760.

About Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network

The Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network and its Certified Wildlife Friendly® and Predator Friendly® programs represent farmers, ranchers, artisans and conservation heroes from around the world. Participating farms in North America maintain and enhance wildlife habitats and employ a mix of careful observation and proactive practices to allow wildlife and livestock to coexist.

Certified Wildlife Friendly® products contribute to the conservation of over twelve million hectares of diverse wetlands, forests, and grasslands; protect keystone endangered species in North America, Europe, Africa, Asia and Latin America, including wolves, elephants, cheetahs, red pandas, and snow leopards, and benefit over 200,000 people through increased food security, income and employment. For more information visit: www.wildlifefriendly.org

Eliza Greenman Burlingame, Marketing Director
Aspen Center for Environmental Studies
Tel: 970.925.5756
Email: egreenman@aspennature.org

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WCS Madagascar brings raffia, cocoa beans, vanilla, cloves and community managed tourism to the Certified Wildlife Friendly® suite of conservation enterprises, products and services while protecting some of the most endangered primates in the world

ANTANANARIVO, MADAGASCAR: – 14 May 2015 – The Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN), a global community dedicated to supporting products that conserve threatened wildlife and contribute to economic vitality in rural landscapes, is pleased to announce the awarding of Wildlife Friendly® Certification to the Wildlife Conservation Society-Madagascar (WCS) program for raffia, cocoa beans, vanilla, cloves and community managed tourism which are all produced or managed by communities living around the Makira Natural Park in northeastern Madagascar. This 1,400 square mile block of forest is unique it in that it provides a refuge for numerous rare, threatened, vulnerable and endemic species including 20 threatened lemur species, three of which are amongst the 25 most endangered primates in the world. The forest plays an important role in maintaining connectivity for species between the forests of eastern and northern Madagascar, and in the provision of ecosystem services like water regulation and supply and carbon storage.

“We are thrilled to be able to offer these new Wildlife Friendly® ingredients and to make them available to buyers around the world. These products will help to share Madagascar’s extraordinary story of people, wildlife and forests to aspirational consumers around the world,” said WFEN Executive Director Julie Stein. “We already have several buyers lined up and ready to begin sourcing these products from the Makira region.”

Indri Lemur, photo courtesy of M. Pedrono

Indri Lemur, photo courtesy of M. Pedrono

WCS is the delegated manager of the Makira Natural Park which was formally created in 2012 after a ten-year period of consultation with local communities, and socio-economic and ecological studies. WCS collaboratively manages the Park with local communities and has a strong commitment to contributing to the improved wellbeing of local populations. WCS has supported 67 community associations to establish a ‘green belt’ around the core forest of Makira and works with these communities to diversify livelihoods options through improving production skills and access to markets for high-quality natural resource based products. In return communities are active partners in Park management activities through involvement in patrols and ecological monitoring activities.

“We are very proud to have obtained this certification for the products produced by communities living around Makira. The work that we do with local communities to improve production quality and thus help to ensure sustainable households revenue has the ultimate goal of contributing to the conservation of the unique biodiversity found in this area, and the Wildlife Friendly® certification is a recognition of this link. We have had very positive feedback from international clients on the quality of products from Makira, and we are delighted to be part of the Wildlife Friendly network as it will help us increase the visibility of these products in new markets” said Alison Clausen, Country Director of the WCS Madagascar program.


About Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network

WFEN and its Certified Wildlife Friendly® and Predator Friendly® certification programs represent grassroots farmers, ranchers, artisans and conservation heroes from around the world including two World Bank Development Marketplace Award winners, a U.N. Equator Prize winner, leadership in the world’s marketplace for REDD+ Carbon Offsets, a Time Hero for the Planet, and a National Geographic Big Cats Initiative grantee. Certified Wildlife Friendly® products contribute to the conservation of over twelve million hectares of diverse wetlands, forests, and grasslands; protect keystone endangered species in Asia, Africa, Europe, and Latin and North America, including the Snow Leopard, Elephant, Cheetah, Spectacled Bear, and Wolf; and benefit over 200,000 people through increased food security, income and employment. For more information visit: www.wildlifefriendly.org

About the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS)

MISSION: WCS saves wildlife and wild places worldwide through science, conservation action, education, and inspiring people to value nature. VISION: WCS envisions a world where wildlife thrives in healthy lands and seas, valued by societies that embrace and benefit from the diversity and integrity of life on earth. To achieve our mission, WCS, based at the Bronx Zoo, harnesses the power of its Global Conservation Program in more than 60 nations and in all the world’s oceans and its five wildlife parks in New York City, visited by 4 million people annually. WCS combines its expertise in the field, zoos, and aquarium to achieve its conservation mission. Visit: www.wcs.org;http://www.facebook.com/TheWCShttp://www.youtube.com/user/WCSMedia  Follow: @thewcs.


Wildlife Friendly

Julie Stein: Julie@wildlifefriendly.org






Mangrove Paddle Boat Tour Guide Association: Discover the Harmony in Nature


The first Certified Wildlife Friendly® Enterprise in the Philippines

Palawan, Philippines – July 17, 2014 – The Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN), a global community dedicated to supporting products that conserve threatened wildlife and contribute to economic vitality in rural landscapes, is pleased to announce the awarding of Wildlife Friendly® Certification to Mangrove Paddle Boat Tour Guide Association Inc. located in Sabang, Puerto Princesa, Palawan.

The old growth mangrove forests of the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park (PPSRNP) are one of the most important biodiversity conservation areas of the Philippines. Mangroves are highly significant in supporting the rich marine life in the St. Paul Bay where smaller fish feed and reproduce. The mangroves are home to reptiles (Phyton sp., Mangrove snake (Bioga dendrophila), and Water Monitor lizard (Varanus palawanensis), as well as breeding site for endangered avian species such as the Palawan Peacock Pheasant (Polyplectron emphanum), White-collared Kingfisher (Halcyon chloris), Stork-billed Kingfisher (Halcoyn capensis), Eastern Reef Egret (Egretta sacra), and Pale Spiderhunter (Arachnothera dilutior).

Sabang Mangrove Paddle Boat Tour provides a unique eco-tourism experience by hosting guided canoe trips and boardwalk access to this unique, centuries old forest and its wildlife. But they also take an active role in protecting its wildlife and educating Filipinos and visitors about the importance of conserving this important ecosystem and the endangered species that need the mangroves to breed, migrate through and call home.

Human pressures on coastal ecosystem of Palawan are high, with land competition for aquaculture, agriculture, infrastructure, and tourism. The delicate balance of the mangrove ecosystem is vital to the health and vitality of the mangrove itself and the overall biodiversity of marine, freshwater and terrestrial endangered species.

“Our product is the beauty and service of the mangroves to the environment; protection of wildlife in the area is very much our concern” – notes Sabang community member and paddle boat guide, Crisanto. The Mangrove Paddle Boat Tours have increased community and visitors’ awareness on the significance the mangrove ecosystem and serve as patrols to protect the wildlife and habitat.

“WFEN is thrilled to have our first Certified Wildlife Friendly® enterprise in the Philippines. The Mangrove Paddle Boat Tour Guide Association is doing such wonderful work to protect endangered species and the unique Mangrove habitat of Palawan. The eco-tourism product they provide is truly an experience that visitors will remember for a lifetime.” says says Ann Koontz, WFEN board, vice president who was on hand in Palawan to award the association their Wildlife Friendly Certification. Read more »

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Shea Terra Organics’ Tamanu Oil is Now Certified Wildlife Friendly®

The natural skin care company has partnered with Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network in an effort to help conserve biodiversity and create jobs in Madagascar


Sterling, VA, March 2014 – For over a decade, Shea Terra Organics, a natural skin care line made using indigenous African ingredients, has provided 100% Pure Tamanu Oil (Certified Organic) from Madagascar. Starting this month, the oil that customers have come to love for its healing and anti-aging benefits will now be Certified Wildlife Friendly®. This new development comes as a result of Shea Terra Organics purchasing tamanu oil from a trading company in Madagascar that is certified by the Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN), whose goal is to help create jobs for communities in high poverty areas while also conserving Madagascar’s biodiversity.

Shea Terra Organics’ Tamanu Oil will now directly support the Vohibola forest, the last remaining forest on the eastern central coast of Madagascar with numerous endemic species. The Vohibola forest hosts four species of trees threatened with immediate extinction that cannot be found anywhere else on earth, one of which has only 33 specimens left. This project helps to ensure the sustainable management and conservation of biodiversity. It also helps local communities benefit from additional employment opportunities, improved income, larger profit margins, as well as access to training and education on sustainable business practices. Read more »

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Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network Teams Up in Unique Partnership with Ethical Fashion Forum and its SOURCE Netork

Ethical Fashion Forum and Wildlife Friendly® Join Efforts to Showcase Sustainable Fashion Combining Substance and Style for the Benefit of People and the Planet


London – Feb. 17, 2014 – The Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN), an organization dedicated to the development, certification and marketing of products that conserve threatened wildlife while contributing to the economic vitality of local communities, is pleased to announce that it has joined forces with the Ethical Fashion Forum’s SOURCE Network in a unique new partnership. SOURCE Network, the global platform for sustainable fashion which provides tools and services for the fashion and textiles industries, and WFEN, with a network comprised of the worlds experts on wildlife conservation and sustainable development, will work together to promote conservation of some of the world’s most endangered species, living next to some of the most economically disadvantaged communities, in some of the most spectacular landscapes left on earth through sustainable fashion, working from field to final product to promote responsible production practices, enterprise development, education, branding and retail.

As part of this partnership WFEN also welcomes Ethical Fashion Forum as its 3rd Founding Corporate Member.  Julie Stein, co-founder and Executive Director of WFEN said “We are fielding increased interest from the sustainable fashion world in ‘greening’ their supply chains through Wildlife Friendly® sourcing.  This is a fantastic opportunity for both organizations to raise awareness and increase impact. We believe this two-way partnership will build on that growing momentum truly combining style with substance for global consumers.”

One channel through which WFEN expects to reach these consumers is via a regular expert guest column for SOURCE Intelligence, the largest B2B resource for sustainable fashion. The Wildlife Friendly® certified ‘cashmere with a conscience’ project lead by the Wildlife Conservation Society was featured by Ethical Fashion Forum’s SOURCE Intelligence in an article exploring fashions ‘wild’ side and sourcing with conservation in mind.

In addition, WFEN and its certified enterprises are already benefitting by effectively expanding the reach of often rural and remote enterprises through online and in person events. The Wildlife Friendly® certified Women for Conservation project which works with women living in the buffer zone outside of two important bird reserves in Colombia, recently participated in a curated global showcase for sustainable fashion called Brand Preview enabling them to access a worldwide audience through Ethical Fashion Forum’s 7000 members in 130 countries. This sustainably produced jewelry line not only empowers women artisans to become financially independent but makes them conservation pioneers and catalysts for change in their own communities through linked initiatives to protect two critically endangered birds, El Paujil de Pico Azul (Crax alberti) and the Santa Marta Parakeet (Pyrrhura viridicata), both endemic to Colombia. Read more »


Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network Member


Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network Welcomes FIRST Founding Corporate Network Member, GREATERGOOD

GreaterGood to Showcase and Support Wildlife Friendly® Products That Help People and the Planet

BOSTON – Jan. 28, 2014 – Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN), a global community dedicated to supporting products that conserve threatened wildlife and contribute to rural economic vitality, is pleased to announce that GreaterGood®, a family of online activism sites and its non-profit partner GreaterGood.org are its first Founding Corporate members. As a founding member, GreaterGood will work with WFEN and its global network of experts to promote wildlife conservation through facilitation and certification of responsible production practices, enterprise development, education, branding and retail.

“We are thrilled to welcome GreaterGood as our first-ever Founding Corporate Member,” said Julie Stein Executive Director of WFEN. “Its family of charitable giving sites and the ‘Gifts That Give More’ program are the perfect venue for reaching consumers who want their purchases to create social and environmental change.”

By working together to showcase the work of the growing number of Wildlife Friendly® enterprises to buyers and the consumer public, GreaterGood will support efforts to grow the market for products developed with sound practices, enabling enterprises to succeed for the benefit of both people and ecosystems.

“As a Founding Corporate Member, GreaterGood is ready to help the Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network expand its reach and impact with our resources and community of ethically-minded consumers,” says Tim Kunin, CEO of GreaterGood. “We strongly support its mission of helping people and wildlife not only coexist, but thrive, and welcome the opportunity to further its cause.”

GreaterGood will consult on product development, help source sustainable goods, activate and maintain best practices for biodiversity and business, and build Wildlife Friendly® value chains. GreaterGood will also feature Certified Wildlife Friendly® and Predator Friendly® products on two of its charitable giving sites, The Animal Rescue Site and The Rainforest Site. Read more »


August 24 2012 The Board of Directors of Certified Wildlife Friendly™ an emerging global eco-label, is pleased to announce it has hired its first Executive Director, Julie Stein. Founded in 2007 and unveiled at the World Conservation Congress in Barcelona in 2008, the Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN) is a global community of conservationists, businesses, producers and harvesters dedicated to the development and marketing of products that conserve threatened wildlife while contributing to the economic vitality of rural communities. Ms. Stein will help the organization reach its mission of setting the global standard for wildlife friendly enterprise and assisting members to reach new and dynamic markets.     Read more »