SHOPPING WITH A CONSCIENCE BY DUNCAN CLARK AND RICHIE UNTERBERGER

Something happened with the review for this book. I clearly remember having written it and yet it was nowhere to be found. What a loss. This was book that I really enjoyed and … yes, one that I would even consider buying. I see it as a reference book, one that shouldn’t be missing from the desk of any green activist. It is that full of information, that all-encompassing.

Initially, when started it, I tired persuading my husband to read it and just give me a short review. It seemed too financially, economically inclined, which I rarely enjoy. I have difficulties seeing the grand scale aspects. But as I eased into it, I found it revelatory and indispensable. I had many matters elucidated – why do we drink fair trade, shade-grown coffee, why avoid Made in China, what are the GE foods, why FSC certified wood, why not farmed salmon, why dolphin-safe tuna (at one point, in a misinformed period of my life, I thought that maybe that some tuna was some type of dolphin and we should not eat that by any means!!!) and so many others. I learned about the fate of banana farmers and the life of milk cows, about why I should boycott Nike and Gap and buy bamboo everything. I also found reference to many online resources for information and green shopping (when one really needs to shop). I am telling you, it’s a book that I don’t feel like returning to the library. Food, jewelry, clothing, shoes, cars, furniture – everything you want to find in a green alternative, has a reference in this book.

What will stay with me is the image of a banana farm worker suffering from a pesticide induced skin disease, with an expression that said too much and hurt to deep.

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