Let's be honest. We as a society have gradually transitioned from the pursuit of necessities to consumerism. Consumed by the desire to own it all, we often forget the impact of our purchases on our local ecosystem. By ecosystem, we mean everything around us, from people working at workshops to make ends meet to the plants and animals harmed due to unethical manufacturing practices.
To meet the rising demands of the population, brands started procuring goods and delivering products without even looking back at the legacy they were leaving behind or the culture they were fostering for discounted costs and high margins.
It makes us think that, are we honestly trying to be ethical and sustainable, or have we restricted the use of these words only to our brochures and marketing assets? It further raises a bigger question - Is doing business all about minting profits, or does it have a bigger goal of nurturing, protecting, and growing everything and everyone associated with the name?
But, it is a great relief to see that more and more people today are becoming conscious of their buying habits and are asking these hard-hitting questions. As a repercussion, modern brands have started addressing their concerns and have realized that if they wish to be relevant in the long run, they will have to do more than just delivering premium quality products.
Today, customers are looking beyond shopping experiences and asking brands about their methods to source raw materials or if their workers are well paid and provided with a safe working environment. They are now considering the long-term impact of their purchases on the environment and strive to make well-informed decisions. It is their way of assuring that the world they live in is preserved, cared for, and handed over to the next generation in a better condition than received.
What do we at 'Amala Earth' mean when we say that our products and raw materials are 'locally and ethically sourced'?
We at Amala Earth believe that a brand is more than just the products it sells or the services it provides. There is a lot that people don't know about brands, like the values they carry within their workspace, the ideologies they follow while making critical business decisions, and most importantly, if they reflect on those values and philosophies when no one is looking.
We proudly call ourselves an ethical brand because:
- We have intricately imbibed a moral compass in our culture that guides us to do better morally.
- Likewise, we reflect on our actions’ economic, social, and environmental impact and correct our course if we find ourselves wandering in the wrong direction.
- We strive to do the right thing and act with integrity, honesty, and accountability even in difficult times.
- Furthermore, we make sure that as we grow, everyone connected with us grows too. We ensure that we create equal opportunities for everyone, our stakeholders, customers, and employees.
- We ensure that people, animals, and the environment are taken care of by constantly monitoring our supply chain.
For us, 'ethics' and 'sustainability’ are not just random feel-good words. We have embossed these values deeply into our company's DNA. Long-term sustainability of the business, society, and the planet forms the outline of our every strategy.
How do we strive to bring positive change by sourcing locally and supporting ethical practices?
Let's take an example of the fashion industry in India. India is one of the world's biggest exporters and producers of textile products and employs more than 45 million people, the majority of which are women from the lower middle class. Most of these workers are underpaid, forced to work overtime, and work in a toxic and unhealthy work environment.
Just by ensuring that the supplier we source our products from is not exploiting the workers and farmers, we assure the well-being of people who are indirectly associated with our brand.
We deeply resonate with these words of Mahatma Gandhi- "There is no beauty in the finest cloth if it makes hunger and unhappiness."
We envisage a fashion brand that ensures the fair compensation of workers and farmers and aims to sustain a supply chain that not only restores and preserves the natural environment but carves a path for others to follow.
The financial and social condition of the Indian local farmers and manufacturers has always troubled us. Though India is considered a country of farmers and craftsmanship, they have never received their due share of appreciation or compensation. Global players arrive in our local markets, thrive by offering products at lucrative prices, and crush our local sellers producing ethical and eco-friendly products using local resources.
We have made it our mission to empower the local manufacturer and farmers, and hence we source the majority of our products locally.
Why do we champion local sourcing?
- When we shop locally and procure things produced in our local communities, we are helping cut down the carbon footprints left behind by international cargo flights or long transport trucks. When we source locally, it helps us reduce the overall fuel consumption and pollutants in the atmosphere.
- Local produce is fresh and takes less time to reach from farm to table. Many local producers pride themselves on growing organic and pesticide-free products. It is advantageous not just to the customers but also to the environment.
- Buying locally also contributes to the preservation of local lands and animals. We support local farmers and producers by purchasing locally, which ensures that they do not have to sell their farms to local developers, which have the potential to drastically change the landscape, wreaking havoc on the species that call it home.
- By sourcing locally, we are attempting to ensure the jobs of local growers, artists, and farmers, allowing them to become financially stable. Consumer demand for local goods results in the establishment of local businesses with local employees. These smaller businesses may not operate if there is no consumer demand.
Sourcing locally and ethically not only makes us feel good about the work we do and the products we create, but it also nurtures a sense of pride among our customers who truly believe in the idea of a sustainable tomorrow. We at 'Amala Earth' believe in the philosophy of 'the butterfly effect' and remain affirmative that one day our small steps will eventually lead to positive and sustainable changes. Driven by the ideas of faith, hope, and freedom, we wish to spread the same wherever we go.