From my friend Ann Thurlow comes a link to this page on shoemaker Timberland’s website that describes how each pair of their footwear now comes with a so-called “nutritional label” that lays out the environmental impact of producing it. They go as far as providing a complete list of their factories, with addresses. Like Ann wrote me, “EVERYONE should do this.”
Back in the last century, Rob Paterson and I cooked up a project called “This Bag of Potatoes has a Website” that would have meant much the same thing for PEI potatoes — a statement of provenance, so to speak, that would have linked the consumer to information about the farmer, the field, and the growing conditions for the potatoes they’d purchased. The project never gained enough traction to take on a life of its own, but it’s obvious that this is going to be a growing trend, driven by consumer demand.
In the same vein, Dan James is working to encourage Smitty’s Restaurant here in Charlottetown to have a variety of fair trade coffee available; Dan reports that they’re looking into it, and signs seem encouraging.