Update. June 2011

Assessment Blitz! ... Chocolate Scorecard... Bad Wood ... Cosmetics ... Garbage Warrior ... Facilitator Training



Assessment Blitz!

Check out our assessment upgrade. We’ve completely revised and updated data from Greenpeace Truefood Guide, Australian Packaging Covenant, PETA and Choose Cruelty Free, and added new sources such as Free2Work. This includes new criticisms for factory farming, price fixing, and labour rights and means changes for some companies, including Energizer, Campbells, McCormick and some egg companies.

We've also added a new 8 tier weighting system (previously 4) and colour-coded icons that reveal a much greater depth of information. At a glance you can see the category (environment, social, animals, business ethics) and weighting (ie. light praise) of each assessment item.

See more at our news page. See our Update Your Print Guide page for specific changes to the 2011 edition of The Guide to Ethical Supermarket Shopping.


Chocolate Scorecard

World Vision’s Don’t Trade Lives campaign has been calling on the global chocolate industry to guarantee farmers a fair price for their cocoa and eliminate exploited labour from cocoa production by 2018. Hundreds of thousands of Australians have supported actions targeting the chocolate industry and significant progress has been made. One victory was Arnott's commitment in October last year to source ethical cocoa (not made using child labour) for all of its chocolate-based products, including the iconic Tim Tam biscuit. more

However, with less than 5% of the world’s cocoa being ethically certified, there is a long way to go. See the Chocolate Scorecard which details the actions and progress of the major chocolate companies to date. To buy ethical chocolate, look out for the Fairtrade, Rainforest Alliance or UTZ Certified logos, and find retailers in the recently updated Good Chocolate Guide.


Say NO to Bad Wood

Whether purchasing timber for your deck or a new dining room table, most of us have no idea where the wood we buy comes from. Every year an estimated $400 million worth of illegally logged forest products are sold in Australia from places such as Sumatra, Borneo and New Guinea - some of the world’s most precious ecosystems.

In 2007, Kevin Rudd promised to ban illegal timber imports, in 2010 the Gillard government promised again, yet Australians could still be unknowingly buying bad wood. Help stop illegal imports, write to the Minister and ask him to 'please stop making your sofas from our rainforests' Say NO to bad wood.

To help you in making an informed, environmentally responsible decision when buying wood and wood products, see the Greenpeace Good Wood Guide.



Cosmetics - update

The European Union (EU) was set to phase out animal testing for cosmetics by 2013, but this date has been set back. The cosmetics industry have been accused of deliberately delaying the development of alternative methods. more To take action to introduce similar legislation here in Australia, see the Animals Australia campaign.

Good news for the ladies. We’ve added 100 cosmetics and skin care brands to our database, which you can see right now on our website. Shampoo and several other personal care product types have also been expanded.




Garbage Warrior - Meal & movie

Imagine a home that heats itself, provides its own water, grows its own food. Imagine that it needs no expensive technology, recycles its own waste, has its own power source. And now imagine that it can be built anywhere, by anyone, out of the things society throws away. Garbage Warrior tells the story of maverick US architect Michael Reynolds and his fight to introduce radically sustainable housing. A tale of triumph over bureaucracy and an intimate portrait of an extraordinary individual and his dream of changing the world.

Screening this Thursday 9th June at Mara's place in Altona, Melbourne's west. Dinner 6.30, Movie 8.00pm more, RSVP to Nick. >> find out more about meal & movie nights.


Facilitator Training workshop

This workshop is being run to equip you to deliver and facilitate 'Shopping with a Conscience' presentations and tours in your own area or with your own groups. Join us to explore the key elements of behaviour change and different approaches in conveying information and alternatives in a realistic, positive and empowering way. Running Thursday 30th June, 5.45pm-8.30pm, City more

Other events (in Melbourne)

-Tuesday 7th June 10.15am, World Environment Day, Ethical Shopping presentation, Hobsons Bay City Council
-Thursday 16th June, 7pm-9pm, 'Shopping – your choice matters', Moonee Valley environment forum
-Tuesday 28th June 5.45pm-8.30pm, 'Shopping with a Conscience' workshop & supermarket tour, City
-Thursday 30th June 5.45pm-8.30pm, SWAC Facilitator Training workshop, City
>> Find out more or register online here


Get the Guide! - pocket guide, iphone app, hemp bags - www.ethical.org.au/shop
See news and print guide updates at www.ethical.org.au/news and www.ethical.org.au/rss
Follow us on Twitter www.twitter.com/ethicalshopper & Facebook www.facebook.com/ethicalshopper
To view this newsletter online go to www.ethical.org.au/newsletters/jun2011.htm