A Step-By-Step Guide to Shopping at Sustainable Businesses
For the month of August, we're covering our four steps to finding and shopping at sustainable companies you may know of locally or worldwide. From identifying greenwashing practices to getting the most of your experience shopping sustainable we've identified a few key aspects to keep an eye out for. Keeping the environment green has not only become more popular in recent years- yet also more important as the opportunity to reverse environmental damage to the earth and atmosphere is lessening every year.
1. Check the Packaging!
Retail companies have a bad habit of producing sustainable goods, then throwing it in non-sustainable packaging. Packaging is one of the primary sources of environmental harm and pollution - from taking hundreds of years to dissipate in landfills or filling our oceans, rivers and streams with micro-plastics and other non-biodegradeable materials. There is also a troublesome approach to reusability within the retail industry/ fashion industry. Organic cotton and jute are oftentimes produced and branded, then marketed as reusable. However, these materials are extremely taxing for the environment and take tens of thousands of uses to make up for the environmental cost used to make them- which is unlikely to happen.
2. Where is it manufactured?
Shopping local is always the #1 choice when it comes to shopping sustainably. Instead of Some environmental and economic benefits that come with shopping local are: decreased emissions related to transport, decreased packaging needs, keeping money and jobs within the community, increasing community involvement, and keeping factories small. Ensuring that environmental standards are met in specific countries can oftentimes be a challenge, due to lack of federal agency regulations and workplace + company standards. Always make sure to find out the production process and origin behind the items you're purchasing and the companies you support.
3. Secondhand or Recycled Materials
We've said it once and we'll say it again-choosing secondhand is the best choice for your shopping needs. Not only are you playing a part in reducing the demand on the environment for new pieces, you're helping reduce waste as well. Shopping secondhand is one of the primary ways to be eco-friendly. Spreading the word and encouraging this behavior amongst friends and family is also extremely beneficial as we attempt to move the behavior of the masses towards secondhand shopping. Secondly, purchasing from companies that utilize recycled resources to produce their final product(s) - whether it be clothes, shoes, etc is a smart and eco-friendly option in comparison to buying products made from non-recycled materials.
4. Commitment to the Environment
Certain brands are a part of initiatives that help solidify their commitment to help keep the environment healthy. For example, here at SHOPUBBI we order all our packaging from earth friendly and sustainably focused company TishWish. TishWish strives to be leaders in responsible packaging manufacturing. Our friends at TishWish are a part of the Timber Re-Leaf program which plants a tree-seed on behalf of every packaging order that comes their way. In addition, carbon neutral shipping options that can be integrated to the way stores deliver their items and reinforce keeping the selling process as eco-friendly as possible. Here at SHOPUBBI we use the Planet app - it automatically calculates our customers shipping emissions, and ensures high-quality carbon removal to neutralize your shipping footprint.The contributions fund cutting-edge carbon removal projects that have the potential to reverse climate change.
Timber re-leaf project. Tishwish. (n.d.). Retrieved August 19, 2022, from https://tishwish.com/pages/timber-re-leaf-project
Rinus. (2022, March 31). An easy guide to sustainable shopping. Regreener. Retrieved August 19, 2022, from https://regreener.eu/an-easy-guide-to-sustainable-shopping/