The impact of the Lucky Iron Fish on the business is that it allows the company to stay profitable, while maintaining its B-corp certification. Keeping that certification is important to Lucky Iron Fish as, in Dr. Armstrong’s words, being a B-corp is “for companies that are committed to doing good throughout their supply chain” (G. Armstrong, personal communication, September 30, 2016) and doing good is a huge factor for how he wants to run his business. As we learned in the interview, the company is profitable, has an 8 person staff, and has projected sales of about one million this year alone. So obviously Lucky Iron Fish Enterprise has found a product that is beneficial to society. As for the actual impact on society, when conducting the interview, it was mentioned that iron deficiency is a major problem in the world, and the interview was heavily focused on this topic. This is due to the fact that the Lucky Iron Fish is designed to help combat the problem of Iron deficiency. As was stated earlier, adding the cast iron fish into a cooking pot will result in an increased iron intake, which will help with the growing problem of iron deficiency.
During the interview the shape of the product was brought up. It was explained that it needed to be different from culture to culture. For example, in India, they had a problem with vegetarians refusing to put the fish in their pots. As a result, they modified the shape of the ingot from a fish, to a leaf. Another example of the product adapting to societal values is the original idea for the ingot being modelled after a fish. The company did this because it is a symbol of luck in the original country, Cambodia.
In terms of the environment, the company seems very dedicated to doing anything they can to be more environmentally friendly. This includes everything from modifications of the packing box using recycled materials, to making sure that the packaging is degradable. In the short term, this product was introduced mostly in developing countries as well as in online markets domestically.
The Lucky Iron Fish has been successful because of two factors; the need for a solution to iron deficiency, and their unique marketing strategy. In the short term they provided a solution to a very pressing problem for society, especially for women in developing countries. They also use a “buy one, donate one” strategy, which provides easy access to the solution for families suffering from iron deficiencies. The fact that they used a symbol like the fish and the leaf to gain favour in specific cultures is another reason that they are able to benefit in the short term.
Research wise, the creator of the product was able to use previous research to come up with a concept, and was then able to bring this concept to more practical tests. There are many benefits that were found in these studies. For example, in our interview we hear Dr. Armstrong say “We’ve seen a 50% reduction in anemia rates for those who use it.” (G. Armstrong, personal communication, September 30, 2016) All of the studies are available online to prove the validity of the product. Simply put, Lucky Iron Fish Enterprise created a product that addresses a major issue while having the creativity to adapt and market it to unique individual cultures.