We've never been a fan of Black Friday, so this year we've flipped it, again.
Last year we launched our first Green Friday Festival and, with your help, raised enough to plant 54,237 trees with Trees for the Future, which offset Australia's festive wrapping paper consumption for the year.
This year, we want to support a cause very close to our hearts and home.
From 29 November - 2 December, we'll be supporting Australian Red Cross Disaster Relief & Recovery with our Green Friday Festival.
We'll be donating 10% of all sales from 29 November to 2 December to Australian Red Cross Disaster Relief & Recovery, which is currently supporting communities affected by bushfires in NSW, QLD and SA. Donations enable Australian Red Cross to prepare shelters, provide psychological first aid, help people to get in touch with their loved ones, and provide information and practical support through the months and even years it can take to recover. The Disaster Relief and Recovery fund covers costs, including training, equipment and transport, as well as the co-ordination effort to ensure its teams are where the community needs them to be.
Don't forget to shop consciously
Black Friday marketing pushes us to spend money we don't have on things we don't need - something we at The Clean Collective have never encouraged. Our motto has always been: use what you have first, then buy quality, ethically made, environmentally friendly products that are gentle on people and the planet.
Gift-giving is also a great chance to introduce people to new products and habits that can make a positive impact on their consumption and health.
Here are some of our top tips to shopping consciously this Green Friday Festival and throughout Christmas:
1. Plan early. When we rush, it's harder to avoid the quick fixes that come with a burden to our planet. Being mindful takes time and thought, so why not start browsing our site now? You can use the heart icon at the top right of the website to make a wish list, which saves the products you love to your account, or you can email them to yourself or to someone else!
2. Look for plastic-free options. Around 114,000 tonnes of plastic packaging was thrown away and not recycled in the UK last Christmas – which is more than the weight of 3.3 million Emperor penguins! Gifts for bubs and kids are often plastic-heavy, look for natural, organic and eco-friendly ideas this year.
3. That's a wrap! Wrapping paper is a single-use item and in Australia, we use approximately 8,000 tons of it every Christmas, only for it to be admired for a few seconds, ripped apart and thrown away. Try reusing newspapers, paper bags or last year's wrapping paper instead. For something really unique, try Furoshiki, the art of Japanese fabric wrapping and knot tying!
What is Black Friday?
Black Friday is a 20th Century shopping tradition that’s lasted the decades, fuelled by impressive marketing. The term originated in the US, to describe the shopping day after Thanksgiving, when the sheer volume of shoppers created traffic accidents and sometimes even violence. Police coined the phrase to describe the mayhem surrounding the congestion of pedestrians and traffic in downtown shopping areas.
The global impact of Black Friday on the planet
Research shows Aussies will spend $3.9 billion this November on a variety of products, including beauty, gadgets, food, alcohol, travel, and clothes.
An estimated $400 million was spent on 10 million unwanted gifts last Christmas, many of which were discarded and likely ended up in landfill.
Black Friday increases air pollution, with an additional 82,000 diesel delivery vans estimated to be out on the UK roads alone to fulfill orders, with plastic toys and short-living electronic goods among the most popular purchases.
During Cyber Monday last year, electronic items were some of the most commonly purchased. All those new phones, tablets, cameras, and home gadgets will eventually turn into electronic waste, or “e-waste.” U.N. findings show that only about 20 percent of e-waste is recycled, and when electronics are thrown into landfills, they have the potential to leak toxic materials like lead and mercury into the air, water, and soil, which poses a health risk.
Anyway, a much more important event is taking place on 29 November in Australia this year...
Following the current devastating bushfires, which are still burning across the country, School Strike 4 Climate will be holding Solidarity Sit-Downs nationally on 29 November 2019, to stand up for real climate action and demand increased support for Indigenous land management and the Rural Fire Service and real climate action, specifically:
• No new coal, oil and gas projects, including the Adani mine;
• 100% renewable energy and exports by 2030;
• Funding for a just transition and jobs for fossil fuel workers and communities.
Find out how you can get involved here.