Author Archive

A radical move for Pepsi


Picture 7Pepsi, once the reigning king of the Superbowl ad, has elected to (ghasp) skip it this year in favor of re-routing a whopping $20 million into the brand’s cause-related, online Refresh Everything Project

, DMNews reports .  It’s a radical move, one that will send a ripple effect through the commercial world, and set new standards for what will be considered the pinnacle of cutting edge marketing strategy in this new decade.  Says Pepsi spokesperson Nicole Bradley, “our…marketing strategy in 2010 [is] less about a singular event and more about a movement. We are always looking to further develop our two-way conversation with consumers.”   A movement-based model is where marketing is heading,  centered around leveraging consumers around sustainable development.    The Refresh Project will allocate $20 million to, A. monthly microgrants of $50 – $250 K  awarded to individuals and organizations who are doing something incredible to make the world a better place, and B. an online interactive vehicle, , to get the word out and garner support amongst “consumers” aka citizens.  I wish Pepsi the best of luck with this campaign.  In fact, I’m going to go drink a Pepsi right now.

Palm Oil, Chocolate and Cotton

PalmFruit KakawaCocoaBeans cotton

What do they have in common?  Well, for sustainable palm oil, certified fair trade chocolate and organic cotton, they’re three of the most relevant raw materials to big corporations seeking to re-vamp their environmental images.  But there’s something more important about them…it’s the catalytic effect that purchase of these three materials by the big corporations have on the global supply.  In short, the more you buy, the more they make, the less you buy, the more just sits there.

Mutiny at the Chamber of Commerce


commerceIt was big news when five of the most prominent members of the US Chamber of Commerce, including consumer Lovemarks Apple and Nike, quit the group due to conflicting agendas on climate change.

Cadbury’s and Cultural Sustainability


At Saatchi S

we talk about four streams of sustainability (Social, Environmental, Economic and Cultural), and cultural sustainability is often the most difficult to articulate, usually because it is relatively difficult to distinguish from social sustainability. This new commercial from Cadbury’s is the perfect example of cultural sustainability in action.Tinny

Gap (RED) turning rivers blue in Lesotho

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Photo by Dan McDougall from the Sunday Times Article

Photo by Dan McDougall from the Sunday Times of London

When the bigger picture comes to light, the intersection of social and environmental sustainability can get complicated…

A devastating article

in the Sunday Times of London paints the cruel picture of negligent environmental practices in the garment industry of Lesotho, Africa – practices for which Gap, and most ironically Gap (RED) , play a foundational role.

U-Haul? U-Offset.

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truck_lineupI moved this weekend – and, unfortunately for me, as a Core Blue consumer I had to make some needlessly complicated ethical decisions about it. Here’s the story about one of those decisions.

BP does a 180 on Green


bpsignThere was a moment

in time (last Spring, roughly) when you couldn’t turn on the tv, open a newspaper or stroll down the block without seeing a glossy, greenwashed ad for British Petroleum ‘s “Beyond Petroleum” campaign – often with dancing children , blossoming logos and the promise of a bright, portfolio-diversified future for the oil giant who tried to be green.

Reclaiming their Own Niche – Whole Foods swaps affluence for health as recession trudges along

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broccoliWhole Foods

, the grocery retailer who has played an instrumental role in catalyzing the growth of sustainable lifestyles and in-aisle education into the mass market (well those who can afford it), is singing a new tune to consumers this month: we’re not here for the affluent shopper, we’re here for the smart and health-conscious shopper.