Written by Kylie Barton
We have become a generation of brand boycotters – and no I don’t mean Russell, we need to embrace that lovable rebellious buffoon (especially since he has seen sense and come out in support of the Green Party).
More and more people are becoming brand conscious, and selectively omitting certain companies from their shopping basket. Whether it be Amazon for tax evasion, Starbucks for paying coffee growers pittance, or H&M for using child labour.
KFC and Starbucks have long been on my list, but as the level of consciousness rises inevitably so does the length of said list making it increasingly tricky to fill said basket. Hmm. Conundrum, and certainly #firstworldproblem, however a good friend recently pointed out to me that without ‘first world problems’ the rest of the problems would never get solved! Here’s why…
If we were all still concerned with addressing our most basic of needs such as food and shelter, there would be no time for the mind to ponder other things like why is it we have so much food waste whilst the rest of the world goes hungry?
If we took into account supply chains of the brands we boycott, it would be very difficult to shop anywhere – even local independent stores with their branded fridges, tills, card readers, and other equiptment. So why boycott at all?
It is important to boycott because the more of us that do it the stronger the message is. The message of it is not ok to hide moral absence and ethical ignorance from the people that line your pockets. It is not ok to pretend you are an ethical brand, and a thought leader if in fact your coffee growers are treated like slaves.
So although you may not be able to ensure every item that falls into your basket isn’t from a sub-brand, partner, or parent company of Nestle, it is still worth you choosing something over Nescafe. If we all stopped choosing Nescafe – Nestle would be forced to sit up and listen, even if we were still buying their less obviously branded products.
Conciousness is a great thing, and generation next already has heaps of it. It is good to know that you buying something has a butterfly effect, but it is even better to do something about it.