“It’s not shopping in itself that’s so harmful, it’s what we buy,” says information released by Adbusters. “As consumers, we should question the products we buy and the companies who produce them.”
SO, How can we become better consumers? We have incredible power with our consumer dollars. How can we use that power wisely?
Why would you want to reinforce corporate greed with your purchases when we can support local green home grown businesses? This holiday shop where business are trying to do right by our earth and for their employees. Every year I am amazed at the creative businesses I discover…… Imagine all the wonderful small green businesses we could reinforce with our wallets.
Everyone wants to save money, but you are not saving money when you purchase lots of cheap junk that will end up in the land fill next year!. About 8 years ago, I stopped shopping Target, and was surprised by the money saved because I was avoiding lots of cheap products we could live without. One of the best things we can do for our planet is to consume less.
We can use our dollars to support local, green, and homegrown businesses. We can shop for quality and keep dollars in our own communities.
My ten tips for Health4earth holiday shopping:
2. Read the labels and ask where products are manufactured. Local craft fairs of handmade items are wonderful for holiday gifts.
3. Shop businesses that pay a living wage and businesses that sell fair trade items.
4. Shop local in your neighborhood, walk or take public transport if possible.
5. Reinforce businesses and restaurants that recycle and do not use styrofoam. I just learned the Mall Of America does NOT recycle bottles and cans.
6. Never buy products for children, including toys, made in China unless you are certain they are chemical free.
7. Avoid purchases from developing countries that lack regulation and enforcement of worker standards such as China, Bangladesh, and India. The closer to home our purchases are manufactured the better handle we have on working conditions and salary. Some countries do not enforce child labor laws! You can be confident “fair-trade” doesn’t have these problems.
8. Purchase for quality and things that will last. A friend’s new apartment refrigerator lasted 3 years, and it was replaced instead of repaired. That must end!!
9. Don’t forget consignment and reuse businesses.
Below are some great sensible businesses that care about our earth and their employees.
http://www.indigenous.com/public/uploads/blog/transparency-2.jpeg What is fair trade?
http://action.greenamerica.org/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=12485 less tinsel, more joy pledge