What is the effect of food transparency?

The downward spiral of exploitation can only be reversed by bringing consciousness to the market place. Of course the government can reduce perverse incentives, for example by taxing pollution. But usually governments look no further than the next elections. Transparency is the key to the solution. Transparency empowers citizens to cast a vote, every time they buy something as a consumer. Also, if you know where your food comes from and who produced it, that creates a feeling of trust and connectedness. It can turn every meal into a unique event.

No sustainability without transparency!


It's common psychology that people are more inclined to act ethically, when they stand eye to eye with the consequences of their acts and have to live with them. That's why we need transparency. Furthermore, it's not even possible to evaluate the consequences of our acts, if those consequences remain invisible. This definitely applies to our spending behaviour, which affects resources and people all over the world. Therefore, at Nature & More, we say: "There is no sustainability without transparency!"

"Every time you spend money, you're casting a vote for the kind of world you want!"

Empowerment

We will never solve the crisis as long as we define "profit" and "prosperity" purely in terms of money. We should include social, ecological and health aspects when we measure the result of enterprise and production. The government can help by taking awway perverse incentives, such as subsidies for the use of fossil fuel. But bureaucracy is slow. Transparency is fast. Transparency empowers the consumer. He or she realises that he can choose to buy a product that makes the world a better place. If you buy organic apples now, you allow the grower to grow them again next year. Author Anne Lappé formulated it tersely: "Every time you spend money, you're casting a vote for the kind of world you want!"

Conscious consumers are frequently ahead of politics and corporate life in their awareness of sustainability

The consumer leads the way

Conscious consumers are frequently ahead of politics and corporate life in their awareness of sustainability. No-one wants to eat tomatoes with pesticides or chocolate that was made by slaves. But there is a gap between knowing and doing. Many consumers see sustainability as a responsibility of governments and companies only. When they buy a product, they are mainly concerned about price. But as soon as groups of consumers start to make informed and conscious buying decisions, their power is enormous. Paul Polman, CEO of Unilever, said in 2012: "Consumers and their wallets can vote for the dismissal of a whole company in a day. In a nanosecond, you're gone."  

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