FAQs

About Hive

Looking for answers about our process and assortment? Look no further. 

How are brands selected? What information are you looking for?

We find brands by shopping local stores, researching trade organizations and memberships, deep-diving on social media, and asking for recommendations (possibly from you).  The first thing we do is taste or test everything. If we wouldn’t buy it, it doesn’t pass go. At the same time, we hold it up to our Hive Five criteria to see how it stacks up. Then, for anything approved, we look at how it fits with the current assortment in terms of flavors, price points, and all that other good stuff.

Why don't you have my favorite brand?

Well first of all, we might not know about it! Please send a recommendation about your favorite brand and why you’d love to see it on Hive to brands@hivebrands.com. That said, we have some hard lines for our criteria like: 

Domestically sourced wherever feasible to cut down on the carbon footprint

People not companies, which generally exudes brands owned by large, international conglomerates

Recyclable packaging—if an alternative product is available in a lower-waste packaging we’ll pick that

How do I find brands that meet my dietary needs?

Great question! We’ve set up a system of tags to help guide, but as with most things right now, it’s a work in progress, and we’re hoping we can help you with curated collections soon. If you have questions, every product’s ingredients are listed on the product page along with which, if any, of the top eight allergens the item contains. We have also included a close-up of the ingredient list from the packaging in the image carousels, so if you have a food allergy, we strongly recommend you double check the ingredients before making a purchase.

Shipping & Shopping

Wondering about your order, your account, or how you'll get your goods? You've come to the right place.

How much does shipping cost?

We keep it simple. Orders over $50 always ship free. Only need a few things? Not to worry because shipping for orders under $50 is only $5.95.

How do I report a problem with my order? (It didn't come, it was broken, it was the wrong thing, I can't find it...)

If you ever run into any issue, let us know at hi@hivebrands.com or 1-888-862-8022

How do I update my shipping address?

Update your default shipping address at any time by signing into your Hive account. You can also confirm your up to date shipping address each time you place an order.

But we’ve all sent something to the wrong address. If you already placed an order and need to update the shipping address, reach out to us. We’ll do our best to correct it. 

What payment methods do you take?

We accept all major credit cards, PayPal, ApplePay, GooglePay, and ShopPay.

How do I track my order?

Keeping an eye on your order through your Hive account. Or check your shipping confirmation email to find your tracking link.

How do I update my payment information?

You’ll be asked to confirm your payment information each time you place an order, so you can update it then. Or manage your default payment through your account settings to save a few steps later.

How do I reset my password?

Forgot your password? It happens. Click the “Forgot Password” link under the “Sign In” and follow the quick steps to reset your password.

How do I make an account?

Just click on the “Sign In” option on the homepage and follow the steps. All you need is a valid email address. You can do this at any time.

How do I request tax exemption?

Reach out to us at any time with a copy of your tax exemption certificate.

How do I return something?

If something doesn’t work you can return it within 30 days of delivery. Products need to be unopened and in the original packaging. Some items can’t be returned like perishable goods, cleaning products, and personal care items. But we can work with you to see if you’re eligible for a refund.

Contact us to set up a return.

Hang on, why am I being charged for return shipping?

We want you to receive exactly what you expect. Our goal is to lessen the need and hassle of a return. That’s why we provide so much detail on the brands and products we carry. 

We will never charge return shipping for an issue with the order. We provide free or discounted shipping on orders being shipped. We just ask customers to help with the cost of sending things back.

So how much is return shipping?

Return costs are based on the size, weight, and dimensions of the package. We make it easy by deducting return costs directly from your refund.

What do I do if my order tracking shows as delivered, but I haven’t received my package?

First, check a few things so we can make sure you get your package as quickly as possible:

1. Take a quick look at your shipping confirmation and make sure the address is correct.

2. Check around your home (Sometimes packages can be left in or by the garage, etc)

3. Check with neighbors to make sure it wasn’t left at the wrong place by mistake. 

4. Allow 48 hours for your package to be delivered. In some cases, a package can be marked as delivered even though it has not been dropped off at the door yet.

5. If you still haven’t found your package, please, contact us so we can help.

How do your discounts work?

If you have a promo code, apply it at check out. But just a reminder, our bundles are not eligible for additional promotions, since they're already discounted.

Everything Else

Oh, you've got some more questions? No problem.

You mention TerraCycle a lot, what is it?

The short answer is a company that helps us help you recycle as much packaging as possible. The long answer is that TerraCycle is a social enterprise focused on eliminating waste—all waste. They work in 21 countries using innovative techniques to ensure that nearly everything they touch can be recycled. We’re working with them to collect traditionally hard-to-recycle packaging materials and turn them into new products, helping to divert millions of pounds of valuable resources from landfills all over the world.

With our partnership, we offer prepaid envelopes to our shoppers so it's easy to separate and return packaging that might otherwise end up in the trash.

Sounds great, how do I opt into TerraCycle?

Oh, that’s easy. If any item in your cart has TerraCycle-eligible packaging, you’ll get a prompt to “opt-in” to the program. It costs $2.00, which helps to offset the cost of processing your material (a pretty good deal if you ask us). You’ll receive an envelope in your order which you’ll need to keep, fill, and send back to TerraCycle for processing. The postage is prepaid, so just seal it up when you’re ready and drop it in the mailbox. And yes, the plastic bag you’re sending back is a part of their program, too.

How are items packaged? What materials do you use?

We prioritize “right-sized” packaging. Which means your box is efficiently packed to make sure we’re making the most of the space and not mailing oversized boxes. The boxes themselves are 60% post-consumer waste recycled content, 40% virgin material from Sustainable Forestry Initiative-certified forests, and printed with non-toxic ink. And yes, they’re always 100% recyclable. All void fill is 100% post-consumer waste recycled content, and 100% recyclable, too.

Why is recycling so complicated? Why isn’t all packaging curbside recyclable?

We know how you feel. It can be complicated, but we’ve put together this guide to help you better understand the whole process.

I lost my TerraCycle return bag or I need another one, how do I get that??

Sure thing, just contact us to request a new one,

Why isn't everything you carry organic?

USDA Organic is a great certification that helps us gain insight into the practices of a lot of farmed products, but it might not paint the whole picture. Since organic growing practices have a lower crop yield, and organic-certified growers don’t represent a large percentage of farms, a brand may not be able to source 100% reliable quantities of organic ingredients all the time. 

Another common misconception is that “organic” is synonymous with “pesticide-free.” That’s not the case. Organic crops are often sprayed with pesticides. The constraint here is that they’re probably not synthetic pesticides. And actually, naturally-derived organic varieties can sometimes be more toxic than their synthetic conventional counterparts. On top of that, organic pesticides break down more quickly and so have to be sprayed more frequently.

Don’t get us wrong though. We’re not saying “don’t shop organic.” We just want you to know that there’s no perfect way to evaluate farming practices. And there are a  lot of factors to consider when looking at a product for sustainable qualities. So, while we’re definitely relying on certifications like USDA Organic to help inform our onboarding criteria, we leave the door open to non-certified ingredients as part of a more holistic vetting process.

Where can I learn more about your carbon offset projects?

You can see your project name and learn more about it on your account page.

Our Stance On Plastic

Why do you carry plastic?

Good question. Before we dive in, we want to emphasize that we absolutely share your environmental concerns about plastic, and we always have our eyes peeled for better solutions in all packaging. We make it one of our top priorities to cut out unnecessary plastic, especially when more environmentally-friendly options exist. When we do carry plastic, it is weighed against several considerations: Is there a better, commercially viable alternative out there for this product right now? If the answer is no, we then ask: Is this a key product, and if so, what are the other benefits that might come with it? Answers to this question may include zero waste practices in the manufacturing or amazing causes to support. Finally, we ask: Is there an existing solution for when this packaging is done?

Wherever possible, we seek out the most broadly-recyclable plastic types (#1 PET and #2 HDPE). That way, there's a higher chance that it’ll make it back into the recycling system. When something is not curbside recyclable, like a chip bag or film, we use our TerraCycle partnership. TerraCycle finds end-of-life uses for almost every material you can think of. You can opt into the program at check out. We also look for recycled content when vetting products. This is an important part of the recycling industry. We recognize that nothing is completely fool-proof and that things are constantly evolving, so we continue to be vigilant for the next great packaging breakthrough.


You mentioned that sometimes plastic is the best available option, how?

Here’s a list of some the benefits plastic can offer when we do have to choose it:

Plastic can help extend the shelf-life of food, keeping things fresh much longer, reducing food waste and reducing carbon emissions associated with growing crops at certain volumes to make up for the loss.

Plastic is lighter to ship than metal or glass, and it’s often more flexible, allowing for more efficient transportation with less of a carbon emissions footprint.

Plastic is a major source of revenue for the recycling industry, especially #1 PET and #2 HDPE. Although it’s not perfect, we believe recycling is an essential tool for diverting waste from landfills and from the environment. We focus on the most broadly collectable types to make sure it’s recycled as often as possible. 

When more people choose recycled and recyclable plastic, it encourages companies to innovate in the recycling space.

Plastic seems complicated. What else should I know?

We want to be transparent and clear with you. As things stand today, the fact is: the consumer industry (and grocery shopping in general) would not be possible without some form of plastic (since all the existing plastic can’t disappear overnight and it does have uses). There are always pluses and minuses to the proposed solutions that exist, like the carbon footprint of shipping heavy materials or the higher risk of food waste. Even plant-based plastics rely on fossil fuels and farms to produce. And for those, there’s no widespread infrastructure in place to recycle them, so they end up in landfills, as well. Many “biodegradable” packaging options actually just degrade into smaller microplastics that then leak into soil and water systems, causing worse impacts than a traditional plastic packaging. So, when we say we really care about this issue and share your concern about plastics, we mean it. And we want to emphasize that we are constantly researching, learning, and striving, but our promise to you is to provide you with real information so that you can make an informed choice on what product criteria is most important to you. No gimmicks or PR stunts here. And if you come across a great brand that meets the Hive Five, and has awesome packaging, we want to hear about it (brands@hivebrands.com can help you there). So we really do thank you for your concern and your partnership as we continue to get to better!