I recently read the following post on one of my favourite blogs, Thinly Spread. I really admire Christine and her commitment to ethical blogging. I too am passionate about living a sustainable lifestyle and supporting companies with good ethical practises.
I’ve boycotted Nestle since my teens. I’ve chosen to do this because of their continuing aggressive marketing of formula milk in countries where the water isn’t clean enough to mix it safely and families cannot afford to pay for it. The fact that these families and their babies are suffering and yet they continue with this practise is inhumane, and I cannot even fully express in words how disgusted that makes me.
As a blogger I receive emails from companies wanting to work with me. Without a detailed guide to every business at hand it can be hard to know who to avoid. It’s also hard to say no when there is money involved and a desire to make an income from my blog. Regardless I’ve turned down work from Coke, Nestle, and Asda/Walmart.
I’ve recently discovered Ethical Consumer who have an ethical shopping guide which rates companies and makes it easier to do my research when I’m considering whether to work with a company. As I gain experience as a blogger I’m learning how to do my research. I’m gaining confidence, learning to say no, and where to draw the line.
So when I heard about blogging community CBias/Social Fabric’s association with Nestle it concerned me. As I’ve already done work for them I knew I needed to think long and hard about whether to withdraw. After discussions with my family, and friends I’ve decided to continue to work with them. Jo (Slummy Single Mummy) who is their UK community manager has talked to them about the strength of feeling in the UK blogging community regarding Nestle. In response they have agreed not to work with them in the UK. This feels like a victory to me. Given their association with Nestle I think chances were high they would have used CBias for campaigns in the UK, now they won’t, less advertising for Nestle absolutely feels like victory.
Obviously they are still working with them in the states, and for some that is too much, fair enough. For me though I consider my life. Today I visited my local shop to buy milk, that shop was selling Nestle, so the shop has an arrangement with Nestle. Am I going to buy Nestle products from them? No way. Am I going to buy milk? Yes, regularly. So I’ll approach CBias the same way, only applying for campaigns with companies I am happy to work with. I think I’ve found my line in the sand.