Epcbuyer - ECO Ethical Shopping Rating
Research Pending
Research Pending
Research Pending
‘Research Pending’ means that The Ethical Company Organisation’s research for that particular product is currently incomplete – it is likely to be available within the next few weeks.

There are ten areas of corporate behaviour reported on by the GOOSHING ethical ratings system. The ethical ratings assessment process ranks companies according to their involvement or not in each of the following ethically sensitive arenas:-

Animal Testing
GOOSHING marks down those brands that are from companies that have any involvement in animal testing.

Animals in laboratories can endure a catalogue of appalling cruelty such as being poisoned; starved of food, water or sleep; applied with terrible skin and eye irritants; subjected to psychological stress; infected with disease; brain damaged; purposefully paralysed; surgically mutilated; irradiated; burned; gassed; force fed and electrocuted. In assessing which companies are involved in animal testing, our researchers keep track of several key authorities including BUAV (which campaigns to end animal experiments, join them at www.buav.org)

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GOOSHING ethical ratings system marks down the scores of those companies that have some involvement in armaments or any related field.

Because of the widespread suffering, death and destruction that armaments cause across the globe, GOOSHING believes consumers have a right to know which companies are involved in any way at all in the armaments industry or associated activities. Then consumers can avoid accidentally supporting those companies through the purchase of other products from the same company group.

Several consumer brand companies do have some connection with the manufacture or supply of weapons or services or products used in the armaments industry or related fields.

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Boycott Calls

The GOOSHING ethical ratings system marks down those companies or brands that have been the subject of a boycott call (where the boycott call was made in good faith by a public interest group whose views attract significant public support)

When a company behaves particularly irresponsibly or consistently badly, campaign groups sometimes call for a boycott of its goods and services. These have proved an effective campaigning tool across the world in bringing about changes of corporate policy – and usually reflect strong public opinion.

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E.C.O Accreditation

The GOOSHING ethical ratings system rewards those companies that are members of the scheme as this is tantamount to an independently verified corporate social responsibility ethical health check.

Several Companies (for example The Ecology Building Society, Innocent Drinks and Brother UK) have chosen to join this scheme which involves a full annual corporate audit across a very wide range of ethical criteria by The Ethical Company Organisation - the people behind GOOSHING and The Good Shopping Guide. See www.ethical-company-organisation.org for more details.

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Ecological Schemes

GOOSHING's ethical rating system rewards those companies that have products which are commited to standards demanded by the following ecological schemes, which are relevant to different product sectors.

Energy Efficiency

GOOSHING’s ethical ratings system rewards those companies that have products that meet the standards set by any one of the following leading energy efficiency schemes: European Energy Label; Energy Efficiency (UK government scheme); the TCO Certificate; the Energy Star Scheme.

Every year, billions of tonnes of polluting, CO2-emmiting and climate-changing fossil fuels are needlessly burnt in power stations to generate the energy to power electrical machines that do not meet acceptable energy efficiency levels. There are several energy efficiency industry standards - such as the TCO Certificate - which are only awarded to products which adhere to certain energy efficient standards.

Organic Certification

GOOSHING's ethical ratings system rewards those consumer brand companies which have one or more certified organic products in their portfolio.

Organic farming encourages biodiversity by reducing the use of pesticides which can be harmful to both the food itself and also to wild flowers, insects and other wildlife. There are several organic standard schemes certify that the organic growers meet certain minimum criteria. And these schemes also insist on high levels of animal welfare and a reduced use of anti-biotics and hormones in everyday animal care. Organic schemes also help to keep farms GM free as they ban the use of GM products.

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Environmental Reporting

The GOOSHING ethical ratings system rewards those companies which have an environmental report or statement.

This is because it is those companies that are aware of and actively addressing their environmental impact that can reduce damage to the environment. At present, the simple existence of an environmental report or statement is enough to get the extra GOOSHING marks – however the GOOSHING research programme will soon be grading reports and giving marks accordingly.

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Fair Trade

The GOOSHING ethical scoring system rewards those companies which have one or more Fair Trade Foundation products.

A fair trade relationship between developing world producers and the buyers of commodities like tea, coffee and chocolate is increasingly key for avoiding the corporate exploitation of some of the poorest people, worldwide.

The Fair Trade Foundation runs an audit scheme which ensures that the growers or producers of goods marked with the Fair Trade mark have received a fair price for their goods. This enables more money to go back into their communities to help with everything from education to health care.

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Genetic Modification

GOOSHING marks down brands that are from companies that have any involvement in genetic engineering or related fields.

This is because many scientists believe that the simple principle of genetic modification could spell ecological disaster. The genetic modification of food is intrinsically dangerous. It involves making irreversible changes in a random manner to a complex level of life about which little is known. Progressive thinkers see it is as a very crude and imprecise process fraught with risks - it is completely different from traditional crossbreeding as it involves the transfer of genetic material between unrelated organisms.

Others say that the biotech industry’s simple aim is to make sure the world buys its food from the same handful of multinational agrochemical companies. Meanwhile, the biotech industry argues that it will help feed the world's poor - but leading third world charities - like Christian Aid - dismiss this claim.

The problem is that there are no reliable ways of quantifying the ecological risks and the growing of GM crops also threatens the wildlife food chain and the production of GM free foods.

The irony is that we don't need GM food.

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Nuclear Power

The GOOSHING ethical ratings system penalises companies that are involved in some way in the nuclear power industry and also supply or make consumer goods.

This is because, in some cases, companies or individuals involved in the nuclear power industry also have links to the production of nuclear weapons. Furthermore, there is a massive latent pollution risk attached to nuclear power - as demonstrated by the Chernobyl disaster. And the fact that radioactive waste remains dangerous for thousands of years really undermines any arguments that nuclear is clean or green – indeed the creation of such waste, whilst we have other renewable energy alternatives, can hardly be an ethical legacy for us to leave to future generations.

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Political Donations

The GOOSHING ethical ratings system marks down brands from those companies that have made political donations to any of the major political parties.

This is because it is not healthy for democracy when companies pay political parties donations in return for preferential treatment. Contracts and tax breaks should be awarded purely on their own merits – not as return favours to those companies that help finance election campaigns. For example, some argue that the fact that the aviation industry gets almost £11 billion worth of tax–breaks and hidden subsidies a year is helped by the fact that it has provided a million pounds of political donations to various political parties over the last few years.

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3.5 to 5 GOOSHING Stars represents a high corporate ethical rating.
3 GOOSHING Stars represents a medium corporate ethical rating.
2.5 to 0 GOOSHING Stars represents a low corporate ethical rating.

GOOSHING Stars are awarded on the basis of the GOOSHING ethical ratings system. This is based on a raft of research conducted by The Ethical Company Organisation in 2004.

GOOSHING Stars relate to the ethical record of the ultimate holding company behind each relevant brand. This ensures that GOOSHING works as an ethical shopping tool at company level - where your money can end up and where key corporate policy decisions are made.

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