Hand on heart, many of us do not really know where all that comes from, what we consume daily. Do you know who made the clothes you wear? Who is involved in the supply chain of delicious chocolate that is currently on offer? What side effects does the cultivation of certain products have on humans and nature? Granted, the lure is great to strike at the discount store. And who does not have to look at the money these days?
Still, once you know what the consequences are for the production and distribution of many mass-produced products, you might think differently about it. And limits itself at least a little.
Where does everything come from that ends up in our shopping basket every day?
Good question - it is often not easy to understand which way some products take. The outrageous logistics of low-priced frozen crabs, which are fished in the North Sea, shaken in Morocco (really true!) And then shipped back to Germany, has only come into the consumer's consciousness through well-researched and TV documentationt.
Fashion from the eco-hell
For example, garments today are produced in incredible quantities in the world's poorhouses, preferably in Bangladesh, but also in China. What working conditions there, some customers may not even want to know. And, of course, a lot of chemicals are used for the fashion-to-go, which will eventually end up in the sewage - and then in the groundwater. Mostly there, where people live in the immediate vicinity, run agriculture, fetch well water.
Child labor and environmental pollution in many consumer goods
Even the chocolate that we all love so much comes from cocoa farms in West Africa or South America. Working conditions are sub-optimal, child labor is not uncommon, the use of pesticides or herbicides is often obscured by the operators. The same goes for the cultivation of cut flowers - the beautiful colorful bouquets, which are often offered so cheaply, come from far away. Very often from South America. The workers - most of them are female workers - are, like many unskilled workers in the Third World, vulnerable to environmental toxins used in cultivation. On top of that, everything that is generously sprayed, so that we have beautiful flowers in the vase, seeps into the groundwater or even wafts into the surrounding villages.
Large-scale environmental destruction - for profit
And we do not want to talk in detail about the palm oil plantations that devour huge rainforest areas, at least this is well known and even food manufacturers, such as nut nougat cream, are increasingly swearing off palm oil.
You see, the world is not beautiful everywhere. And our consumption - especially our affordable consumption - has its price. But others pay. Somewhere where we do not see it.
YOU can do something about it- and it is not associated with much effort
Thereby you can do a lot. The obvious thing, of course, is that you shop in your immediate area where you can see how your food, juice or wine is made. This is quite possible - many farmers run farm shops and go so far in the transparency that there are even company visits. And some of them are committed to sustainable farming, so you can buy organic-quality foods in their season. With this you buy fair and support the regional producers. And with food you taste the difference!
Fairtrade - sustainable, ecological, fair
Articles from other parts of the world, but also for example clothing or toys, gifts, cosmetics and the like, are getting harder. But do not worry, that too can be bought with a clear conscience. That's what the global Fairtrade network is all about. Fairtrade initially means that producers are paid fairly and fairly. At the same time, however, Fairtrade is also striving for sustainability in production. Education and training are provided in the countries of origin and important support is provided to help producers learn to produce high-quality goods for which consumers in Europe are more than willing to pay a little more. As the concept often helps Fairtrade producers to break out of the vicious circle of poverty, the first step is often to better educate their own children and thus pass the effects on to the next generation. air
Therefore: keep your eyes open while shopping
Fair Trade products are marked with the Fairtrade Seal. Some of them can be found in conventional supermarkets or drugstores. In addition, you can browse the so-called world shops to your heart's content. Here, from the clothing to the chocolate bar, there are only goods that could withstand the stern scrutiny of the World Store buyers.