Filed under: J840 Week 2, Society + Media | Tags: Barbie, green, Mattel, plastic, TerraChoice
Green…I think this word has undergone some abuse in the last few years. Today, we are constantly bombarded by company advertisements that tout green practices and products. While I do believe that some of these efforts are genuine, my cynical side also tells me that a lot of companies are making these claims solely to increase profits and gain greater market share.
I found Mattel’s Barbie™ BCause collection to be particularly guilty of this. The BCause collection repurposes excess fabric from other Barbie collections. According to the company news release, “Barbie is always a reflection of current cultural trends and issues, and girls are increasingly aware of making a green statement,” said Richard Dickson, Mattel Senior Vice President of Marketing. Okay, so they’ve tightened their manufacturing by reusing some materials, but let’s not forget that Barbie is a plastic doll, sold in plastic casing.
And Mattel is not the only company that is committing this sin. According to a recent study by TerraChoice, an environmental marketing agency, the number of “green” products has increased by 79 percent from 2007 to 2009.
So, what do I think about green? Well, I don’t view it as a mere trend, as the Mattel news release suggests. And I don’t feel I’m making a statement when I use my cloth bags at the grocery store. It’s not about veiling Barbie in reusable materials and slapping an “environmentally-friendly” sticker on her. I don’t claim to know all of the answers or do all of the right things, but making a concerted effort to live green just feels right to me. It’s about making conscious, thoughtful decisions that have a positive impact on the world in which we live.
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