If sustainability, ethics and fairness are things you want for Christmas, then putting in a bulk order at Amazon is probably not the best way to help achieve them.
“During the crisis we’ve seen a shift to online and this trend is going to be on steroids this Christmas,” says Tim Hunt, co-editor of Ethical Consumer magazine.
Instead, if you can, consider buying from businesses that put sustainability and ethics at the forefront.
Ethical Consumer is an amazing website and magazine which helps to cuts out the noise and gives you information on which businesses have been naughty or nice this year. They cover everything from high street clothing retailers, bookshops, health and beauty products, to which are the most ethical supermarkets.
This year, the pandemic has had a devastating effect on small businesses. Therefore, if you can, it’s more important than ever to support your small, local businesses.
Charities have taken a huge hit since the pandemic started, with fundraising events cancelled and shops forced to close. Many of the larger ones have online stores worth checking out – Sue Ryder has a big collection of new homewares, kids’ stuff and wooden Advent calendars, while British Heart Foundation sells through eBay and offers secondhand items including games consoles and mobile phones. Amnesty International and Oxfam have good choices of Fairtrade and ethical products, from chocolate to furniture.
Finally, if you are shopping online, someone has to deliver it. If you buy locally, the retailer might deliver itself, and in a city it could even be by bike. Otherwise, you won’t usually get to choose who delivers to you. There are some green options: Ethical Superstore runs a scheme where you can add £1 to your order to support a tree-planting charity to offset some of the emissions from your order, and Etsy says it offsets all of it deliveries.