Monday, April 27, 2009

Green Earth or Cold, Hard Green?

There's a no win situation that lurks out there, and I just can't seem to pick a side that makes sense to me. On the one hand, we're in a recession and everybody and their dog is trying to save money, keep their jobs, stay afloat. On the other hand, the environment is taking a licking and has been for awhile and certainly needs all the help it can get. Add to that the fact that in using Earth friendly products, you're probably also being more healthy in general. But herein lies my issue. I can't do both.

I can't be Earth friendly AND save money. It's just not happening. Every product out there that I deem "good for my family" is ridiculously expensive, so I don't buy it. So I buy the cheaper and deadlier product. And THAT certainly leaves me feeling less than thrilled.

The other thing is, for some of these anti-chemical and toxin products, the amount you get is minute!!! They don't contain all of those good preservatives to help them last longer, so their shelf life is minimal. You get a tiny little amount and use sparingly, for a glaring price.

So, what's a Mom to do?? I don't even have an answer-hence today's blog.

Last night, I was looking up some natural products that I'd like to buy for my family. I was looking at soaps and body washes and shampoo and conditioner. The bars of soap were four dollars. You can't leave them in the shower or they'd melt away faster then you can say Paraben. That would literally be four bucks down the drain. The body wash (which thank heavens can also be used as shampoo-but oh! That will make it get used up quicker! D'oh!) was seven dollars and fifty cents!!! Say what????

I'd also like to buy organic-wouldn't we all!! But especially meat and dairy. I'm hoping to grow my own veggies this summer so hopefully that will help out on that level. But it's crazy expensive to try and purchase (or even find!) those items to buy. The choice level is severely lacking where I currently reside. So, while there may be a world of products out there, they come at a price. A hefty one. And I can't break the bank to buy some chicken.

I know some will say, "well, it's worth the cost to ensure the health of your family." Can we ever really "ensure" that?? Organic or not? Do I risk my family for the mucho deneiro that can then pay for them to play soccer or go to a movie or gasp.....have electricity?

I really think there needs to be some way that these healthier, organic, green products are more readily available and accessible to the Average Joe. Is it only the wealthy who deserve to live healthier, cleaner lives? Are MY children lesser than because of money? Certainly not to me they aren't.

The producers of the green products say that the costs reflect the methods (more time consuming, more difficult) they use to guarantee the optimum healthy alternative. It takes longer to grow a chicken or a an egg when you aren't cramming steroids into them via feeding tube for example. But the conspiracy theorist in me says it's also somehow about "branding" and the idea, like Prada or Gucci, that organic is something for the elite. If you have money, you choose/use organic products. Why? Because you CAN. Same reason you buy that ridiculously overpriced dress or shoes or handbag.

We all WANT organic, we can't all HAVE organic. Which makes us want it MORE.

So, I do what I can. I buy organic when I can or products that are readily available and accessible and don't force me to give up my home to live in a yurt. Which is really the next green earth trend so I shouldn't mock.

But I think some pressure needs to be asserted on the producers of ALL consumer products. Let's make healthy choices a little easier for all of us to consume. And remove some of the elitism found in the label organic. That way, we can all have access to things that can make us healthier, make the environment healthier, and save our planet in general. Isn't that what we all want, in the long run???

I know I'd certainly be happier knowing I was buying conscientiously, and still being a smart shopper financially. And I bet if more could afford it, those companies that lowered their prices would have more sales. Win-win right?

So, let's get this ball rolling! The chickens (and our children) are counting on us!
More Green with Less Green!!!!! More Green with Less Green! More Green with Less Green!

1 comment:

  1. I agree with you 100% on this!!!!!!!!!! I have a cousin who is always preaching about organic and I basically feel like the worst mom on the planet cause I can only afford normal shampoo, milk, snacks, etc... for my family.