Is it possible to shop eco-friendly for the Holidays?

Clothing store

Holiday shopping and eco-friendly/sustainability don’t seem like two things that would go hand-in-hand. When you’re shopping for deals this holiday season, you likely aren’t thinking eco-friendliness and sustainability. However, it is possible to be mindful of the environment — regardless of whether or not you’re waiting outside in the cold directly after Thanksgiving for doors to open!

What should I keep in mind while shopping?

Keep in mind brands that you’ve heard in the news are not employing humane or eco-friendly practices. You may want to shy away from brands that use child labor, actively engage in price fixing or tax evasion, or that have caused harm or burden on their employees.

Generally speaking, brands that are manufactured in the USA are going to have tighter labor laws, so you may be able to purchase safely in terms of labor practices if you see the little flag on your product. It’s important to note that US brands may not always manufacture in the US, so make sure to keep a keen eye out.

Shopping local will often give you the best ethical and sustainable products. Shopping at local area stores that have items created by local individuals can help keep dollars in the US economy and keep storefront owners in business.

What brands are proven to be ethical?

Shop Ethical happens to have an easy to use, searchable database of companies, and rates them on the amount of ethical practices they have in play, from A to F. Simply type in the name and click on the company to see their report.

Here’s an example report:

Apple Shop Ethical Report

You may be shocked to learn that Apple Inc poisoned workers in China and actively engages in price fixing. You may think twice about supporting this brand based on this grade ad the criticisms listed.

Nobody’s Perfect…

Very few large, corporate level brands have scored As according to Shop Ethical, which is both disconcerting and frustrating. Corporations should do better to promote ethical and sustainable practices in their brands. However, putting your hard earned dollars in to a B or C rated company over an F rated company is important. Money is power to companies that intend to sell, and the less you spend on companies that employ poor practices, the less you’re allowing them to get away with it.

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