With social consciousness while shopping on the rise, information is indeed strength. It’s one thing to look for a GMO label, but with the rules regarding such stuff far from settled, how do you really know what you’re getting? Maybe more importantly, who are you getting it from? With layers upon layers of corporate ownership, do we really know who’s leading the show when we’re actually shopping?
To date, the answer has often been no, but now, here’s a big yes to add to your arsenal.
It’s an app for your smart phone called Buycott, and it rocks.
Conceived by Darcy Burner and made a reality by programmer Ivan Pardo, this is an app worth having and using liberally.
With a quick scan of darn near any product in the store, you can quickly discern who really makes it, and what that company is up to, good or bad.
For example, a scan might reveal a parent company of a seemingly harmless provider to be someone you don’t want to support. Scan a product, and Buycott shows you the entire corporate family tree. If the outfit in question contributed money to oppose mandatory labeling for genetically modified foods, Buycott will throw up a red flag for you.
Buycott isn’t just for the grocery store; you’ll find it useful for everything from big box stuff to the hardware store. Try it, you’ll like it!
Best feature for my mind? You’ll have a voice when using this app; you can join or form user-generated campaigns to watchdog business practices that don’t float your boat. Not everything you’ll find is negative, a feature I like as much or more than the bad stuff: Buycott will tell you the good things a company does, like supporting same sex partners or an outstanding environmental record.
Buycott developer Ivan Pardo said it best, I think: “I don’t want to push any single point of view with the app,” said Pardo. “For me, it was critical to allow users to create campaigns because I don’t think it’s Buycott’s role to tell people what to buy. We simply want to provide a platform that empowers consumers to make well-informed purchasing decisions.”
The app is truly brand new, but I’ve been using it for several months and waited until I was comfortable that Buycott was through its growing pains before letting y’all know about it. I’m happy to say that, with several hundred uses, I’ve nothing but good things to say.
Get it and use it, you’ll be better informed and empowered for having done so.