Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Are you buying green products?

A new survey says consumers talk a good game about buying green produts, but many of us are not putting our money behind our words.

We say we want green products, we put pressure on stores to stock green products, and we even acuse businesses of greenwashing when they make imperfect claims of sustainability. But, when it's our turn, too few of us actually buy the green products.

Why does this matter?

Stores are reluctant to stock green products if we don't really buy them. It's not enough to say we want them, stores look to see whether we're walking the walk on sustainability.

So who's dropping the ball on green products? Manufacturers? Retailers? Or consumers? The current study says we should look in the mirror to find the problem.

17 comments:

elizabeth said...

while this is indirectly related to "going green" it's not a comment directly about this post--I just saw this article and thought about this blog and wanted to share it with y'all and your readership. What effects the fish, effects the humans.
Thank you for this blog--it's great!

http://www.bestlifeonline.com/cms/publish/health-fitness/Our_oceans_are_turning_into_plastic_are_we_2_printer.shtml

Kate said...

You know, I'd love to go green with my cleaning products, and when the products are on sale I may stretch my budget to get them. Problem is, these green products cost twice as much as the other products... else I'd buy green everything.

Unfortunately, "I need an increase in my social security check so I can shop green." Doesn't garner much sympathy with the government.

and if our local supermarket actually HAD paper bags instead of plastic, I'd be wrapping my garbage in something biodegradable as well.

Oh, and if our city, which claims it's going garbage free in 10 years, actually had recycling containers for the population, had recycling of all recyclable materials, and stopped issuing people those big garbage cans that roll out to the curb every week and save the money (and plastic) for the aforementioned recycling bins, I'd also be a lot happier.

We put out ONE BAG of garbage a week... for a family of three, and that's without recycling cans and half the plastics and paper that come through our house (because of the city's recycling rules). I'm pretty happy with that, but not 100%. I'd like to do more, but the cost is so prohibitive for families like ours!

Kate said...

Sorry for the blogment. You touched a nerve.

Dawn Colclasure said...

I do buy green products but only when I can afford them or if it's something that I need that is available as organic, recycled, etc. Such a shame there aren't many people practicing what they preach.

Mr. J said...

I think that going green is much harder done than said. Many of my friends attempt to go green by filtering tap water or recycling, but that is offset because we all drive cars to work. We seem to be too lazy to put enough effort into buying and using green products.

Carennedy said...

I like to use green but like others have posted the products aren't always affordable, nor are they always available or convenient.

Fish Whisperer said...

Let get real, if you really want to go green get out of your car. Then lets look at the green products and how they got to the supermarket shelves. And as said before look at the price. Oh I almost forgot let us take a look at the big companies and their green record. Can you say solar?
Cheers

böcek said...

very nice blog :)

Me! said...

I'm sure price has a LOT to do with it. I try to buy "green" products when I can or at least avoid using the paper or plastic bags.

On another note, I wish big businesses would take a leap and spend the money to go solar. I couldn't imagine how much energy would be saved if every building in downtown Dallas (and other cities) converted.

But yes, the mirror is a great place to start.

gaea said...

Great blog!

Isn't this a bit of a catch 22 situation though? In reality, we would have to do more non-green things to help the green product movement. Must we drive further and spend more time hunting for green products, which means using more fuel, electricity and water among other things?

There has to be a better way...

Vincent Robleto said...

the green movement is unfortunately and inextricably linked in common thought with hippies. and hippies won't sell cleaning products.

somi said...

thats wird but i don't get it

Eco Mama said...

Good point! I think we can ALL do more (consumers, retailers, manufacturers, etc) to green our activities.

I would also like to point out to Kate that you don't have to spend a fortune on green cleaning supplies. You just need some vinegar, baking soda, and ammonia and you are all set.
http://radiantideas.blogspot.com/2008/07/eco-friendly-cleaning.html

Cheers!
Tara

Lea Self said...

ALL I buy is green products.

http://leameetsworld.blogspot.com

Foodieconomist said...

Recycling more, using your car less and buying responsibly will only be done when the lost, money or time is less than the gain. The gain comes down to how you feel about the sacrifice.
Companies goal is to price at the very limit of our willingness to pay.
Fair trade has succeeded and so will sustainability

Carlota said...

i love going green but i don't think i'm ready to give up on the sanitary napkins women use during their monthlies.. I'm not yet ready to use a cloth that I have to rewash to use it again.. :((

ihadira said...

I am a "poor starving" student and I have been buying green products since the mid-90's. I don't buy commercial junk food, I go local and always organic. People have excuses but the cost of these products are not that much more than regular products. In the long run it is better for your health as well. My health is my top priority therefore I only buy green products. Another option if people cannot afford these products is that they can make their own. It takes mere seconds to make your own products. There are sites all over the web that tell you how to do this.