An example of greenwashing that I have experienced on a weekly basis is when I go to the grocery stores and there are a different choice of bags to purchase which requires you to pay more money. When purchasing these bags, you are not only paying for additional bagging but you are paying for being green. Going green should not have to cost so much money and should not require additional labor and work to create something that is technically not benefitting the environment. This go green idea is actually washing the go green aspect away because to the public or the shoppers, this looks like oh if you spend your money, then you are supporting the idea to make better decisions by buying bags that is actually just making profit for the company or organization that is selling the bags. Not only is the company wasting its money to get these bags made for customers, but customers are wasting their money as well. One problem that came to my mind when thinking about people reusing bags for grocery shopping, is the amount of contamination that each one of those bags contain after shopping previously before another time of grocery shopping. If you think about it, think of the meats that may be leaking blood or something from the packaging or how the bags are laying in the shopping cart where others hands have touched. These bacteria then get into the bag and are contaminating the newly bought groceries. Also, it is important to think about what products are being used to manufacture and produce these so called go green bags. The resources being used to produce these bags, are taking away from the environment themselves. Therefore, the green bags are typically just portraying a greener friendly environment to the customers to attract their attention more.
I have never thought of greenwashing like this! I, like you, generally go into the stores and have an option of a plastic toss away bag or a more “green” option, the reusable bag. Personally I have never bought the reusable bags because I just never think about it but after reading your blog, I could definitely see where this would be a scam for the company to make a profit.
You`ve raised some excellent questions, Lauren! Oftentimes the “green” bags themselves come from petroleum products. The biggest detriment plastic bags seem to have are the consequences they have on our waterways.