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Ethical brand ratings and accreditation since 2001

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Tim Hortons

How ethical is Tim Hortons?

Tim Hortons is a coffee shop chain which has a below-benchmark score on The Good Shopping Guide’s Ethical Coffee Shops Ratings Table. Although Tim Hortons has not yet met our ethical benchmark, we hope to see the brand make progress in the future.

We would have extra confidence in Tim Hortons if it submitted itself to apply for Ethical Accreditation, whereby The Good Shopping Guide would make further detailed assessment and recommendations for ethical improvement. Find out more about the ethical issues facing the Ethical Coffee Shops sector.

What does Tim Hortons do?

Tim Hortons is a Canadian multinational coffee shop chain based out of Toronto. It was founded in Ontario in 1964 by Canadian hockey player Tim Horton and is now owned by RBI (Restaurant Brands International) Inc.

In which areas does Tim Hortons perform poorly?

Tim Hortons receives a bottom rating for its lack of a Reusable Cup Scheme, and lack of Organic or Fair Trade certification. It also gets a bottom score for Animal Welfare, as another RBI subsidiary, Burger King, has been criticised for “very poor” management of chicken welfare in its supply chain.

Find out more about how we rate by exploring our ethical criteria.

Past Criticisms of Tim Hortons’ record

Tim Hortons has faced criticism from Greenpeace International who established a direct link between Burger King (a fellow RBI subsidiary) and cattle ranchers responsible for setting fires in the Panatal region.

In which areas does Tim Hortons score well for its ethics?

We found no criticisms relating to Nuclear, Fossil Fuels, or Armaments, so Tim Hortons scores well for these criteria.

How can Tim Hortons improve its ethical rating?

The below-benchmark score that Tim Hortons is awarded with on The Good Shopping Guide’s Ethical Coffee Shops Ratings Table is the result of an evaluation of multiple ethical criteria.

To reach our minimum ethical benchmark and qualify for Ethical Accreditation, Tim Hortons has some issues to resolve, including its lack of certification and lack of an Environmental Report specific to the brand. If it applies for Ethical Accreditation, The Good Shopping Guide will be able to give Tim Hortons some guidance to improve on these areas.

Were you aware that your brand could benefit from Ethical Accreditation? Brands accredited by The Good Shopping Guide can display our Ethical Mark, showcasing to consumers that it is an ethical and sustainable brand. If you’re interested in learning more, please contact us or complete a Free Initial Assessment form.

Ethical performance in category


GSG score


GSG category benchmark


Ethical Rating


  • Environmental Report


  • Genetic Modification


  • Organic


  • Reusable Cup Scheme


  • Nuclear Power


  • Fossil Fuels



  • Animal Welfare



  • Armaments


  • Political Donations


  • Fairtrade



  • Ethical Accreditation


  • Public Record Criticisms


= GSG Top Rating = GSG Middle Rating = GSG Bottom Rating