Why We Don't do Black Friday

A sale that's kinder for the planet? Vivo Life's Green Friday sale will go live on the 27th November, until the 29th!

It’s really important to start this blog by making it clear that no one should feel ashamed for participating in Black Friday. 

We’re humans, we like shiny things, and we all need to consume, at least at some level. 

I have bought more than my fair share of items from Black Friday sales, and many of them I’m still using many years on. Many of them barely made it the year. 

What I didn’t consider at this time was the impact on the planet, and everybody on it. To me, it was just a cheap deal. 

I want to use this article to discuss the impact that Black Friday has on the planet and what you can do about it. 

Vivo Life's Green Friday sale will go live on the 27th November, until the 29th!

The impact of Black Friday

Have you ever watched those insane videos of Black Friday on social media? It’s usually a bunch of people queued up at a supermarket, and they charge into the store like a raging bull, desperate for a good deal. 

There’s sort of mixed feelings here for me - it’s a weird combination of sardonic humour mixed with a hint of sadness.

But there’s also a sense of understanding. Who doesn’t like a good deal? Who wouldn’t want to pick up a bargain TV to put a smile on their kids face? 

Clearly, why people join in on Black Friday isn’t that black and white - judgement is unhelpful. 

Unfortunately though, the effects on the environment are truly one-sided - it’s irrefutably bad for the planet. Here's just a few reasons why, and what you can actually do about it. 

Electronic waste:

If you're like me, the most frequent type of item you've purchased from Black Friday is electronic. When I’m after a new device, Black Friday seems like the logical time to buy, right? Unfortunately, all of these unnecessary phones, tablets, and TVs have a far bigger net impact than just me losing a few hundred pounds.

Only 20% of these electronic items are  ever recycled. Sadly, it's not as harmless as just taking up a load of space either. When e-waste heads into a landfill, they can often leak toxic materials into the surrounding environment. That can mean lead and mercury polluting waterand soil. Studies have shown that children near these landfills have a higher risk of neurological and cognitive disorders.

 

What can you do?

Use your devices until they bite the dust! Apple has convinced us we all need a new phone every year, but the fact is that the upgrades at this stage are minor. Holding off another year for that upgrade is kind to your wallet, and the planet. If you MUST have it…jump onto eBay and buy used. You can even sell your current device and put it towards the new one! 

 

Super fast delivery:

With companies like Amazon offering 'Prime' delivery (even same-day in some instances), the effect on our carbon footprints can be huge. Shipping your order to you super fast means more diesel-using trucks, and less efficient methods of shipping.  

What can you do? 

Buy from companies that use carbon-neutral shipping methods. If that’s not an option, and you’re going to buy something on Black Friday, try and go without your next delivery for a little longer than you usually might.  

 

Fast fashion:

Fast fashion is one of the worst industries for the environment - period. While mega-convenient, the creation of cheap, temporary clothes results in pollution, poor treatment of workers, and countless more. Studies have estimated that a literal truckload of textiles is wasted every second - with just a fraction being recycled.

What can you do? 

Buy timeless, high quality pieces that you won’t get bored of. Wear each item until it’s unwearable. Don’t buy things just because they’re on sale! Thrift clothes (and save loads of money), and sell what you don’t want on eBay or Depop! 

Plastic waste:

Literally billions of kilograms of plastic are produced every year - 91% of that isn't recycled, and it often ends up in the ocean. Purchasing wildly on Black Friday leads to more and more plastic waste. 

 

What can we do?

Support companies who make an effort to reduce plastic. Boycott the worst offenders! Support companies that are embracing more environmentally solutions, such as home compostable packaging.

Why Green Friday is a better option:

We believe in giving you a good deal on our products, while also working with you to give back to the planet we all live on. 

Green Friday is our version of Black Friday - a day that you can indulge a little. Unlike Black Friday, Green Friday actually has a positive net result for good old mother Earth. 

Here’s how it works:

  • You get 15% off all Vivo Life products
  • We donate 10% of that sale to charities 
  • We plant 10 trees for every single order you make 

Vivo Life is ‘For the Living’ - and that means people, planet, and animals.  Here’s the charities we’re working with: 

For the People

Help Refguees charity logo green friday
Help Refugees is a charity that provides emergency aid and long-term solutions for climate refugees. Climate refugees are people who have been displaced from their homes due to environmental factors, caused by climate change and natural disasters.
89% of all donations go straight to the frontline.


For the Planet

Cool Earth Charity logo vivo life green friday
Cool Earth works directly with rainforest communities to stop deforestation, which has devastating effects on the planet. Cool Earth works directly with local and indigenous people to empower them to protect the forest, and to preserve their culture. For Green Friday, Vivo will be raising money for projects in New Guinea and Peru. 

For the Animals

Born Free Charity Logo Vivo Life Green Friday
As the human population grows and grows, wildlife is suffering. Born free is a charity that aims to stop this. Their purpose is to conserve and protect wild animals, natural habitats, and functioning ecosystems. The money Vivo will donate from your purchase will go directly to help wild Chimpanzees in west Africa, who face extinction due to the actions of humans - including poaching, habitat loss, and more. 

Our Green Friday sale will take place from the 27th-29th November. I'll keep you updated on the results of the event! 

And finally, remember that no one is perfect and we can't all live 100% sustainably as long as we're still human.

But a little bit of something is a lot better than a whole lot of nothing! By following our Black Friday tips and supporting events like Green Friday, you can help us make the planet that little bit greener.

Take care and speak soon,

- Elliot

 

P.S - Scroll down for our FREE sustainability ebook! It's got some great and simple ideas to help us be kinder to the planet. 

 

Sources: 

  1. http://ewastemonitor.info/
  2. https://www.thelancet.com/journals/langlo/article/PIIS2214-109X(13)70101-3/fulltext#seccestitle110
  3. https://www.vox.com/2017/11/17/16670080/environmental-cost-free-two-day-shipping
  4. https://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/2018/11/how-black-friday-cyber-monday-impacts-environment/

 

https://files.vivolife.com/ebooks/en-GB/Sustainability-Guide-Ebook-en.pdf

 

 

 

 

 

 

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