One of our guiding beliefs here at TTM, and something our founder Jane explains in Buy the Change You Want to See, is just how easy it can be to use your purchasing power for good. You don't need to turn your life upside down just to make a difference. (Though if you want to, more power to you!) So many tiny decisions we make throughout the day can make a positive impact.
One of the easiest ways to do this is to focus on the impact of everyday products you needed to buy anyway. For example, for an everyday consumer, this might mean a switch to an ethical and fair trade coffee brand. This means a positive impact is made without ever adding anything new to the weekly shopping list. This principle is exactly the same for companies and organizations: if there’s a regular bulk order you make, you can switch it to a sustainable supplier for massive impact.
We saw this idea in action when we fulfilled a recent order of face masks. We supplied a re-order of 150,000 GOTS certified organic cotton masks for farmers working in the American agriculture sector, sourced from a team of hardworking makers in a GOTS certified organic cotton factory in Bangladesh. Choosing an ethical supplier instead of a conventional factory for that one simple order of an everyday essential item saved over a million liters of water. The order also created thousands of hours of fair wage work, and saved thousands of kilograms and kilowatts of emissions and energy respectively.
One simple decision, surrounding a purchase that would need to be made regardless, impacted numerous lives across the world, in both the US and Bangladesh. That small choice served as another step in preserving our planet, helping us preserve the precious resources that we all depend on.
On its surface, changing the world seems like a tall order. But while none of us can do it all, every choice we make has the power to help far more people than we could ever imagine. As it turns out, checking out at the grocery store or clicking “order” on your business’s latest supply restock can be an act of great change. Take a look below to see that change in action. You have more power than you think!