What Does Ethically Sourced Mean?
We live in a day and age where almost anything is accessible. With just a few taps on our phone or a few keystrokes on our computers, we can have a product delivered right to our doorsteps. Technology has made it possible for both small and big businesses to reach a wider audience. A wider audience means more customers and higher demand for their products. The more customers there are mean higher profits. Customers get what they want and businesses get to enjoy increased sales. Everyone wins, right? Well, not everyone.
One thing that we sometimes forget is that the materials used to manufacture those products are limited. With such high demand caused by the ease of access to these products, businesses or companies are looking for new ways on how to get these raw materials at a much cheaper price point but at a higher quantity. Basically, the main driving force is higher profits. With a strong incentive to keep up with the high demand, most businesses will go to any lengths to get those materials. Even at the cost of the environment and other people.
Technology has also made it easier for us to get and share information. With this easy access to information and out of sheer curiosity, people started to question where exactly they are getting their products. Imagine the surprise when they found out that the answer aren't the prettiest. Poor working conditions, low wage workers, environmental damage and mistreatment are part of the process to satiate the demand from consumers. People are not happy with this, and we've been demanding policies and standards to stop these abuses.
Ethically sourced means that the products or the materials used to make those products were obtained in a sustainable and responsible way. The workers involved in the manufacturing must be treated fairly and must be in safe working conditions. Environmental and social impacts must also be taken into consideration. This also means that the procurement process must be in line with international standards against human rights abuses and criminal activities.
People are now more cautious when it comes to purchasing goods. We now do our research before engaging with a company. We are now making sure that the products we are buying are ethically sourced. We are now more vocal about calling out business owners and companies who don’t follow the standards for ethical sourcing. This also gave rise to other companies who make it a mission to only go the ethical route. Things are slowly but surely moving towards the ethical path.