Green is the new black...Friday
Columnist Kirsty-Jo Muddiman explores the yearly shopping event Black Friday and if it’s environmentally friendly to partake.
Black Friday is looming.On November 29, the adopted US discount sale will be taken up by many retailers in the UK. Images of crowds, sometimes getting violent, will flood the media and
maybe you’ll snap up a bargain.
Every new product has a monetary cost to you but also an environmental cost to the planet.Before you get swept up in the advertising and persuasion to buy, think about whether it’s really a bargain.
There are many reports that Black Friday deals aren’t always what they’re cracked up to be.Maybe that TV isn’t really the bargain you thought it would be, and it’s unlikely that Christmas best-sellers like games consoles will have a discount applied.Shops increasingly buy “special purchases” to fuel the frenzy.These are often lower quality goods which give the appearance of a bargain but which have a similar profit margin for the shop and you will be getting what you pay for, an inferior
product, rather than bagging a bargain.Black Friday gets its name from the business bank balance when stores see the red bottom line change to black.Financially driven, they’re not likely to discount what they think will sell for full price in the run-up to Christmas.
It may be that you need a new TV and maybe your kettle has given up the ghost but if you don’t need something new, then why spend your hard-earned cash?If you do buy something new, do your research before you buy and don’t be tempted to buy something different if the heavily advertised “real” bargains have all gone (these are often in limited supply and used to lure you into the shop).If you get that special purchase TV home and there’s only one device port, you’re going to regret it.
You might have Christmas parties to go to and want something different to wear but consider what you could revamp from your own wardrobe, swap with friends, buy second hand or perhaps you could rent a designer number.
The problem with Black Friday is not that goods are discounted, it’s that we’re persuaded to buy spontaneously, persuaded that the bargain is truly unmissable.The clue is in the name though, this Friday is black to the advantage of the store, not necessarily you.
Movements against so called fast fashion are urging us to think Green.The “Make Friday Green Again” collective, made up of more than 300 clothing brands, wants us to look in our wardrobes to see what we can repair, sell or recycle rather than hitting the shops to buy things we don’t need this Black Friday.Black Friday creates a false market which means over-production and this is significantly impacting on climate change.One pair of jeans causes 33.4kg carbon emissions alone so think carefully about how many pairs you really need.Make Green the new Black and put Black Friday back where it belongs, after office hours on the last Friday before Christmas Day.