Saturday, November 6, 2010

Following up - commitements of an Aussie eco-shopper

Hard as it is to believe, but it is almost two months since my review as an Aussie Eco Shopper and I thought it was time to review the commitments I made at the end of that process.

The list:

* planning to check out the local Farmer's Markets - there are plenty to choose from in our area, so I intend this to become part of my regular weekend activites.

Well, I think I am now officially addicted to Farmers Markets! What a wonderful treat they are! I aim to go to one each weekend and so far the only weeks I have not have been due to other commitments or weather! This is something I hope will continue to be part of my life.
* try and reduce the takeaway meals by planning ahead more. 

I am pretty sure I haven't ordered take away at all in this time - if I have, it has slipped my mind! I have been preparing alternate quick and easy options on the nights I don't have time/energy and home made pizza (store bought bases, I am not a saint!) have become what I hope to be regular options.
* revisit the recycled toilet paper section and see if the quality has improved!
Okay, I finally did this for the office, but habit kicked in when we did the monthly grocery shop and I only remembered once I had the 18 roll pack at home! next time. Extra motivation through the Wipe for Wildlife campaign.
* sticking with my new moisturiser, Moo Goo, which I love and discovered via this book!
I still love it and have a couple of tubs and a handy pump pack in my handbag, however I was disappointed to see it wasn't ideal for my skin over time. I have gone back to my organic lavendar-based product from the health shop, so not a complete fail and I use the Moo Goo on my feet and hands, which aren't so sensitive.
* sticking with my new crystal deodorant, which I am not sensitive to AND find quite effective :)
All good here :)

* buying fair-trade coffee for work and home.
Still my intention, just not had to do so yet.
* buying a stainless steel drink bottle
I ended up getting a Sigg bottle from lululemon, a yoga supply store. I love it and use it daily, however it is a little on the large size and becomes very heavy when full, so I am looking for a smaller one to lighten the load.
* awaiting a response to my email to Motto about how and where their fabrics come from.
I got a response!

You are right, we do make all Motto garments right here in Australia which is great. Because of a lack in makers in the country though, we will most likely eventually have to get manufacturing done in China as the facilities are getting very scarce here. This wont happen in the foreseeable future but eventually all businesses will have to outsource unless there is a big trend in garment manufacturing which would lead to experienced makers in our community.
We have recently started a new brand called "Motto Inc" which is currently made in China (although we've only done a few styles) and that goes through an agency we deal with in Australia. They take care of all the manufacturing side and find various factories to make each item so we aren't specifically tied with one factory over there. Im not 100% sure but I think this is because many factories wont take us on as we only make boutique quantities rather than 1000's which most other brands do. We want to keep our line very exclusive and to do that we cant make too many of the same thing so we aren't very attractive for China to take us on!
In regards to our fabric, the same applies as our clothing. We buy all our fabrics through a wholesaler in Australia (about 5 major ones and then buy stock of other people) and they get their supplies from various manufacturers. From what they have told us, most of it is from Taiwan (we think they have much better quality although this of course is not always the case) but Im sure some does come from China as it has to originate from somewhere!! We are way too small a company for any factory in China to really bother with so we don't have enough "power" to negotiate with them directly. We really cant make the "rules" which is why we make in Australia and will do so for as long as we can.
Most of our printed fabrics are also designed by an artist which we get printed in Korea and they are a very ethical country so we have no concern here. We have visited the factories and they are lovely and also very small like us so we have been very pleased with all our associations with them so far.
I hope this answers your question, feel free to pop in and see our factory or email me anytime for any extra info!
Lauren Browne

I think that is about as good as it is going to be for such a company. I will continue to support them, as small businesses are my preferred first option.

* investigating worm farming!
After finding the options available at Bunnings were suspiciously expensive, I surveyed my Facebook community and got lots of great information! I have decided to buy online from Kookaburra Worm Farms - just waiting for some time and money after the upcoming wedding!

So I think I pass the test I set myself! I have added other changes as well, but they can wait til another day!

No comments: