The holidays are a great time to invest in meaningful gifts for your family members and friends. However, each of those gifts comes with packaging and shipping containers that can take an environmental toll. With birthdays and other occasions, gift-giving doesn’t stop at the end of the winter season! Here are a few ways that you can give back by shopping sustainably all year.
What are the benefits of shopping sustainably?
There are so many benefits to shopping sustainably. Sustainable shopping means supporting responsible business practices and making a positive impact on the environment. These green consumption practices reduce water pollution, carbon emissions, and large amounts of product waste and water waste. Additionally, sustainable shopping supports fair labor practices and fair wages for all employees. In other words, your purchases support ethical business practices, reduce negative impacts on the environment, and invest in community development.
How can I shop sustainably?
Now that you know a few benefits of shopping sustainably, you may wonder how to make your purchases more ethical. Here are a few of our tips for how to shop more sustainably.
Shop local and small businesses.
Shopping local is a great way to give back to your community by stimulating your local economy. Local business owners often invest in their communities, meaning your purchase directly impacts your community. It also reduces environmental impacts by decreasing emissions from shipping and driving environmentally-conscious competition with larger businesses. Shopping at local businesses is also a great way to build relationships with others in your community.
Read the label, and look for natural ingredients.
Consuming natural ingredients is better for the environment for several reasons. First, it reduces the amount of non-biodegradable food waste produced. Second, natural ingredients are better for your health, which can have long-term impacts on the environment by lowering healthcare waste. Third, using natural ingredients supports sustainable agriculture practices and promotes local ingredient sourcing. You can find some great sustainable gift options just about anywhere nowadays. One of our favorites is Sanaa Chocolates!
Look for the Fair Trade Certified seal.
When you are shopping, it is crucial to look for Fair Trade products. Fair Trade is a certification that companies can obtain for their commitment to responsible and ethical business practices. Purchasing Fair Trade shows support to these businesses that treat workers fairly and honestly. It also ensures that you invest in a high-quality item that was also ethically produced.
Consider Zero-Waste Gifts
Rather than filling a stocking with plastic toothbrushes and one-use items, consider buying them a reusable water bottle or metal straw instead. Know someone who loves to hit up the farmer’s market? Try gifting them reusable shopping bags or beeswax wraps for their food. And for the kids in your life, give them a handmade blanket or wooden toys this year.
Shop Sustainable This Holiday Season
There are many benefits to sustainable shopping, from reducing your environmental impact to supporting workers and responsible business practices. Luckily, there are also many ways to make your shopping sustainable by purchasing local, natural, and Fair Trade products. Whether you are finishing your holiday shopping or searching for other gifts, we hope that you will consider making your shopping more sustainable.