Sunday, May 10, 2009

Ideas from the Whole Earth Festival

One would be hard pressed not to notice the goings on of our campus this weekend: the Whole Earth Festival is in full swing on the Quad and the surrounding areas, and the celebration of the earth seeps through. Walking around, looking at all the things for sale, I couldn't help but wonder at all the ways to be greener, be more organic and be more earth friendly. Going back to my blog from last week, I noticed a lot of "greener" items that were decidedly example of this would be organic messenger bags for the price of about $64. My friend was searching for a bag as a birthday gift for a friend of his, but quickly shied away from this less-than-college-student-friendly price tag.

One booth that caught my eye in particular was a booth selling organic shea butters, body soaps, and lip balms. Now, organic lotions and soaps don't sound too far-fetched, what with everything being "organic" these days, but the catch with these items in particular was that they came in biodegradable containers! I thought this was pretty cool, because I've definitely gone through my share of lotions and lip balms, and had many empty containers to show for it at the end. Even the ink on the packaging is made of soy ink!

Something I wonder, however, (because of the topic of my research paper -- garment workers and labor conditions) is how these products are made (and by whom). In the "Forever in Trouble" article, Byun discusses the tragic conditions under which many products are created. I would like to think, since these products are sending the good message of being earth-friendly, that the products are created in a human-friendly manner as well.

According to this article, however, the word biodegradable doesn't necessarily mean what it says. There aren't stringent regulations about biodegradability and it "does not mean it is healthy or safe for people or the environment." Items could just be a gimmick, because being green is a fad at the moment.

Christine Vo
Blog #3

Kawamura, Yuniya. 2005. Fashion-logy.

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