Most of us don’t consider the lengthy process that a product goes through to get to store shelves.
From production to packaging to transportation, every commodity has an impact on those involved in its manufacturing and the environment.
In a world where the cheap reigns supreme, this impact is often negative.
Conscious consumerism is defined as a way of engaging in the economy with more awareness of how your consumption impacts society at large. Most people jump immediately to environmental impacts, which is an important factor, but there is more to it than that.
There’s also poor labour standards that need to be rectified and a toxic over-consumption culture that can even affect our mental health.
You may be wondering how your actions, which seem to be just a drop in the vast ocean of consumer culture, can possibly make any difference. This is something that deters many people from even trying to become more conscious consumers. In reality, small actions lead to big change.
A significant number of individuals around the world are making the choice to change the way in which they consume. Add the impact of all of those individuals up and you get astounding results.
There is of course the problem of accessibility. One of the main criticisms of the movement is that not everybody’s socio-economic circumstances allow them to buy fair-trade and eco-friendly products, which are often more expensive than other less ethical options.
Just do what you can when you can, even if it’s rarely. The more demand is created by consumers, the more accessible it will become. The simple fact is that sometimes we can’t opt for the more conscious product, and that’s okay!
There are lots of small ways in which you can make a difference.
If you do want to make the switch, here are some ways that you can:
Learn More About the Brands You Buy
It never hurts to do a little research into what kind of company you’re funding. Your custom matters and helps to propel the business that you’re putting your money towards, and you never know when you might be investing in a company that doesn’t at all align with your values.
Don’t overwhelm yourself with researching every little thing that you buy – it’s not realistic to do that and you’ll likely get sick of the whole process and revert back to your old buying habits. Start by focusing on repeat purchases and brands that you support often.
Realize that Cheap Is Not Always Fair
This one is a tough pill to swallow. Our society values cheap products above all else, including ethics. It’s only natural – we have a lot of expenses!
However, it’s important to note that it’s very difficult to judge what’s actually a fair price for a product without knowing the ins and outs of the production process. You may be getting a great deal, but it’s often at the expense of a worker who is being paid next to nothing for their labour.
If you’re concerned with animal rights, buying cruelty-free products is one of the best ways that you can help. Brands that aren’t cruelty-free perform heartless tests on animals, most often rabbits, to assess the safety of their products.
With countless other efficacious methods to evaluate these things, there’s absolutely no reason for animal testing anymore.
Next time you’re about to buy that lipstick or moisturizer, give the company a quick google to find out whether or not it’s certified cruelty-free.
Walk, Bike and Carpool Whenever Possible
Driving significantly increases your carbon footprint due to petrol emissions. If there are any alternative ways that you’re able to travel, make use of them as much as you can! Of course, make sure that safety is your top priority.
We can easily offset our efforts to go green by consuming too much. Trying to buy only what we need and no more is a great way to cut down on how much we consume.
Not only is it good for the environment, but it’s cost effective and helps us to reduce our expenses. This way, you may even free up more financial space to make conscious buyer choices.
Buy Second Hand as Much as You Can
This is another great money saving tip that’s good for society and your purse! Second-hand items are not only cheaper, but also a great form of recycling.
The fashion industry is significantly more polluting than the oil and natural gas sector, making up as much as 10% of humanity’s carbon emissions. It’s wasteful and not necessary when there are so many great pre-loved options.
Eat Less Meat
The meat trade creates more carbon emissions than every automobile on the planet combined. 450 grams of beef takes a whopping 6810 litres of water to produce!
Offset this by trying to have at least a few vegetarian meals a week. Even one will make a difference, and you can find loads of recipes so delicious that you won’t miss the meat at all.
We all inevitably have to purchase things, but it doesn’t have to be mindless. Some careful consideration of the whole process by which a product came to be in your hands can go a long way to improving the environment and the lives of others.
Through a collective effort, no matter how small, we really can make a difference.
Why not start right now by trying the New NESCAFÉ Gold Vegan Lattes. These lattes are made from plant-based goodness and are kinder to the environment.
All packaged sustainably comprising of recycled material. Interested and want to know more click the button below.