Nutritional Labels for Footwear

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.


Ann Thurlow's picture
Ann Thurlow on December 20, 2006 - 00:40 Permalink

I thought about it after and it occured to me that, while this is a good start, there could be more. Like, how much does it cost to get the boots from where they are made (Viet Nam) to here.

You start to think about this stuff and you can drive yourself nuts.

Rob Paterson's picture
Rob Paterson on December 20, 2006 - 11:58 Permalink

We were too early Peter — BUT the idea is still a good one. Provenance and accountability is surely a better quality system than inspection. Look at eBay!

If more people in the food system would do this  — then we would in effect recreate the old fashioned country market where both sides knew each other