You’re browsing the aisles of one of your favorite stores. Let’s say it’s Target, because, it’s probably a favorite for many of us, right? You’re shopping for groceries, but somehow, you end up by the clothing and accessories (or does that only happen to me?). With all the brands to choose from at a supermarket like Target, how do you know if a product was produced ethically? There’s a few ways to find out:
1. Check the package for a “Fair Trade Certified” or similar label. The Fair Trade Certified label isn’t the only indicator of a fair trade product, like I originally thought. Because there can be lots of red tape involved in this certification, some companies choose other certifications, like Green America, Domestic Fair Trade Association, and Free2Work Certified.
2. Check the package for information on how the product was produced. For example, on Starbucks’ coffee packages, Starbucks claims to ….
3. Check the label for the place it was made. Every clothing item has a tag that tells you where it was produced. If there’s no other indicator, products made in the USA, Canada, or Europe are more likely to have been ethically made.
4. Check the company website. Search the FAQ, About Us, and Our Story sections of the companies’ websites to find information about where and how they produce their goods.
5. Check the Free2Work.org grade. The work has already been done for you for many major companies! Free2Work gives brands a grade based on their efforts to ensure no child or forced labor takes place.
6. Scan it with the app!
If none of the above produces any fruit, you can make your best guess, or look for alternatives that you do know are ethically produced.
Have you tried any of the tips above? What did you find out?