Everybody loves a bargain! And with half yearly sales about to hit store prices are going to absurdly cheap. But. There's always a but, there's always a catch. If you're able to buy a top for only $10 how much did that company pay it's producers? And how much did they producers pay their workers? It's surprising how little we know about where the products we buy come from, or care to know. Because the truth will put a damper on your bargain shopping.
A large percentage of the clothing, toys, home wares and goods and even the food that are stocked on our store shelves have been made by slave-labor. Production occurs in offshore unregulated factories, warehouses and sweatshops where mostly women and children work long hours in dangerous conditions for little to no money. Slavery unfortunately is not a thing of the past, but still affects more than 30 million people worldwide. Basic work rights which we take for granted such as a minimum age, fair wage, reasonable hours, safety, and freedom from physical and sexual abuse are denied for the benefit of cheap production.
As we've discussed in previous weeks over-demand and consumption is a huge driver behind companies and producers lowering their prices and buying in bulk. However, as we are now learning vast amounts of these products, particularly food and clothing end up as garbage placing a huge burden on the environment in pointless pollution and emissions from production and creating landfill. Even local farmers are suffering from supermarket competitiveness to drive products cheaper such as milk, meat and vegetables making their produce near worthless unless sold in large quantities.
The catch behind that cheap price at the check-out is that it's costing many other people and the environment. There are numerous companies these days that only produce ethically made products and clothing, as well as local farmers and small business owners that could use your support. So take some time to do a little research and perhaps think twice about the real cost behind the bargains.