As a child scrambling up trees to pick apples in my grandparents orchard, I thought that sunny picture was the story of all food. It grew on a tree in a grassy field, someone picked it and walked it inside to the kitchen table. Right?
After growing up, living through the BSE scare, reading lots, and some years of working in the meat and dairy industry I realized that sadly that is not the story of all food. We all know that now, but there started my journey of clean eating. I wanted to know the story of my food before it hit my plate.
When I was in my teens one day my dessert loving dad stopped eating all chocolate and cocoa that wasn’t fair-trade. It was an issue that hadn’t even crossed my mind but it made me want to know that story too. Something can have a good story in terms of my health, but not a good story in terms of how other people are treated on its journey. Slowly I made the (let’s be real slightly painful!) move too before fair-trade chocolate was widely available, and I started to dig into the issue.
Fast forward 2 decades and I’m now asking that story in every area of my life. What was the story of this product before it entered my home? I want to know. Most recently we’ve been asking that story about what we wear. I used not to even think about their stories prior to my purchase of a piece of clothing. So now I am. I’m asking myself questions about what my clothing is made of and how that impacts the environment, about how it’s affecting the people in the factories, or the people harvesting the crops. I’m asking questions about cotton being organic because of the impact chemicals on the environment and the people who process it, I’m asking about the fuels used in production. I’m realizing that in the way we all now know that every piece of food doesn’t come to us harmlessly and organically neither do our clothes. I’m not going to reel off stats and facts, you can do your own research or ask me if you want to know but I did want to give you some of the amazing companies we’ve found in the journey! Because like food, while there are a lot of practices I don’t want a part in there are also some incredible people out there making some beautiful options and I’m so grateful for that!
In a way I’m selfishly lucky I found my clothing conscience in 2016 and not 1996, because the options are now endless. With so many companies investing in their workers in incredible ways, and with organic cotton and well sourced natural materials being a more prevalent option, shopping responsibly takes research but it’s very easily achieved.
I asked everyone I knew and scoured the web and world sometimes for hours each time I’ve wanted to make a purchase so I wanted to give you the list of what we’ve found that we love and have actually purchased.
Read our list of 14 ethical brands we’ve found and loved HERE!