Consumer Today and How it Affects the Artisans
We are so used to being the consumer that we are that we seldom consider the cost of a product beyond its price tag, oftentimes we're thinking the cheaper, the better. Personally, I believe that consumer responsibility is more than just knowing our rights as a consumer; we have to take it upon ourselves, too, to know what else costs a product. In other words we have to be a conscious consumer.
Conscious Consumer: What it means?
We can reduce, reuse and recycle to our hearts delight but it doesn’t keep us from being the ‘consumer’ – we are bound to purchase something, be it big or small. The question to answer really is, ‘are you a conscious consumer?”
Being a conscious consumer means you are taking into consideration the impact of your purchases not just to people but to the environment as well. It involves educating yourself about that product’s hidden costs and its effect to business practices and to the economy as a whole.
Favoring so called, ethical products, such as cruelty free, organic, recycled, re-used, produced locally or fair trade not only shows support to environmental conservation and preservation but to small traders or progressive companies as well.
Being a wiser consumer and choosing to purchase coffee beans from fair trade, for instance, assures you that you’re not just supporting a community to sustainably exist but also ensures you that nature is treated respectfully in the production of those coffee beans. Promoting fair trade goods also give artisans and producers, mostly from developing countries, the opportunity to compete fairly in the trading world.
Sadly, in our modern consumer economy, the value of a sustainable community and clean environment are overshadowed by goods and commodities that are priced too low – when in fact the hidden cost of such commodities includes irreversible or irreplaceable resources that future generations will have to pay. This is the very reason why we have to become a conscious consumer. Knowing the impact of our purchases – how it will affect people and the economy as a whole, will help us decide which purchases will benefit us, people, in the long run.
Ideally, practicing conscious consumerism and becoming a better consumer will change the trading practices and forced companies to reconsider the way they conduct their businesses. Raising awareness on how to become a conscious consumer will ultimately reward companies that are choosing to embrace sustainability. These companies, who support communities and changing lives all over the world, will soon earn their rightful place in the trading world.
We can all improve our economy, enrich communities and protect the environment through our conscious effort to become a better consumer.