Sunday, 3 July 2005

ethical audit

In a burst of slightly mis-placed enthusiasm we have invited Vic, Kate, Auntie Kate and Uncle Horace to tea this evening.

It seemed like a good idea at the time, but after spending yesterday mostly in our pajamas, leaping in to action to roast lamb and peel potatoes this morning has been a bit of shock to the system.

So we've cheated.

We have been to Asda and we have bought pre-prepared vegetables.


In bags.

Please, please don't tell my Ma - in her lexicon this is only one step up from buying pre-prepared crumble topping, which is apparently a hanging offence.

To try to make up for this burst of rampant consumerism, I have just been looking at the Northern Harvest website. They work with producers in the area to source and deliver food locally. They have a selection of organic produce and will deliver every week, provided you spend more than fifteen quid.

We stopped our organic veg box before B went off to Germany, as there was no way I was going to eat all of it on my own each week. And then in the interim, the people we were using changed their minimum delivery from £10 to £15, which is too much for just the two of us weekly and impractical fortnightly.

So the Northern Harvest people might work out okay, as they will deliver all sorts of groceries to make up the fifteen quid, as well as simply fruit and vegetables.

They also have a locally produced dry cat food for sale.

I am in a quandry about this - we are currently feeding our two Iams. I understand there has been some very bad publicity about the company recently because of the kind of animal-testing that they do. I have checked it out in my copy of The Good Shopping Guide which categorises companies according to their ethical stance and actions. Iams is in the middle one of the three bandings - so whether or not the allegations are true*, there are more ethical alternatives.

The three cat foods in the 'ethical' band are: Hi-Life, Pascoe's and Yarrah. Looking at the statistics The Good Shopping Guide gives, Yarrah seems to be the most ethical of the three. I've never heard of it, although I've just discovered that you can buy it from various places online.

I need to make some enquiries about the local stuff and then decide which to switch to.

If the blinkin' animals will eat it, which is always the catch :).

I am going to go and make some of my own crumble topping now, in a kind of never-to-be-articulated apology to my mother.

* From the information on their own website, it looks as if there definitely was an issue, which they say has now been corrected. See here for details. A quick Google for Iams also brings up loads of stuff from sources not related to the company.

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