If you are a green brand fan, or lover of any ethically orientated brand, now’s the chance to be get your fav brand nominated for the Observer Ethical Awards. But hurry, you have until Friday 16th March.
Retailers, campaigners, fashion, food, arts & culture, big ideas, business initiatives, whatever you rate, even sporting stars (well it is the year of the Olympics) they can be nominated.
I’m nominating Method, Food from the Skies and Thornton’s Budgens in Crouch End. Andrew Thornton has been a leading light in the ethical retailing field and has proved that the more ethical products you put on the shelves, the more people buy. He’s also helped establish a good few new entries to the market. And they sell a bread product we invented.
The last time I attended the OEA it was great to see young fashion brands get a big lift up thanks to the awards. Last year’s winners included Pachacuti Fashion, The People’s Supermarket, Riverford Organic Vegetables, Compassion In World Farming, The Bristol Bike Project, The Co-operative Group and for the Big Idea award, Pavegen,?who came up with an idea that uses wasted kinetic energy from footsteps and turns it into electricity, allowing people to take part in energy saving in a fun educational way.
However, a memorable event was being mistaken for Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall – we have more than a passing similarity.
Hugh headed off after he picked up his green gong so I suddenly found myself getting lots of handshakes. Despite many attempts to convince people I was NOT the ethical legend Hugh, especially to one Scotsman who ran an organic fish farm and wanted me (well Hugh) to visit it, I finally settled for the line, ” I’m not Hugh but his brother Chris.” It worked. What else can you do? Well at least we also have ethics in common.
This year’s award is sponsored by the greenest of all cleaners, Ecover (who alas won’t be winning any awards for their press ads – sorry guys but that ‘Feel Good Cleaning’ ad in the Observer magazine was a Golden Turkey nomination if ever I saw one). Other sponsors include the Body Shop, Timberland and the National Grid.
Judges include Vogue’s Jessica Bumpus. Model Lily Cole, TV presenters Rick Edwards and Stacey Dooley and many other notable ethical champions.
At least the Observer have some genuine green sponsors, unlike the Climate Week Campaign (March 12th – 18th) who were a bit shocked that I refused to support them this year because EDF (and a big car company) were main sponsors. Dooh! Obviously they have never read my blogs on them. Further more, I don’t agree with their eat less meat claim as it’s actually a vegan propaganda argument that has been discredited – rice and many vegetables are just as bad at producing methane.
So give those ethical brands you buy a chance and start nominating. I’ll be reporting on the winners once the awards are announced.