There is some debate on if shopping can change the world, and some of us struggle with the moral implocations of shopping at all, waste, polution etc.
Howevere, there is a point where we have to buy things, at least on occasion, like groceries (darn that eating thing) and clothes (darn the weather) and presents for the kids and friends we like, and if we like reading we tend to buy books, or if we like music CDs or MP3s, maybe we like movies so there are those and of course we can rent or borrow but sometime we really want a book of Rumi or the Princess Bride at an arm’s reach.
Anyway, my point is there is a level of shopping that NEEDS to be done on occasion, so why not do it the most ethical and environmentally way possible?
The first step is shopping local- local means less gas from you or someone else to get you your product. This also means that the money you spend goes right back to the community. Your taxes pay for schools, roads, lights etc. The rest goes to the person that owns the store and the local employee whose wage your supporting. Now if you do this at a locally owned store even more of your money goes back to the community.
As you can see in the infographic they are more likely to give to charitable organizations too! For instance, our neighbor Happy Lucky’s Teahouse donates 10% of profits to schools in cambodia. Which means there is an even bigger world impact from your money going to them instead of another coffe/tea place.
Small businesses and local businesses mean less environmental impact, for us it’s reselling used books so they don’t end up in a landfill. For the local organic farmer, it’s the minimal impact on the planet with how the food is grown and how far it travels. For many businesses it is using sustainible and reusable cups and plates for your food and drink.
The best thing about many small businesses is the community that they build around themselves. For Happy Lucky’s its tea and the art of, for the Silver Grill a few doors down its history and homemade american favorites. For the breweries it’s the love of a craft, local support and the joy of a cider or beer.
So, shop local, support a friend, make a friend, and see how well your community prospers.
and as always: HAPPY READING! and remember to try and have fun with life, it’s too short after all.