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Ellis Jones
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The Better World Shopping Guide: Every Dollar Makes a Difference

4.23 of 5 stars 4.23  ·  rating details  ·  179 ratings  ·  27 reviews
According to the latest research, the average American family spends nearly $22,000 a year on goods and services--that's 22,000 votes for the world you want to live in. Do you want to ensure your money is supporting companies who work to make the world a better place, or risk its going to corporations who make their decisions based solely on the bottom line?

"The Better Wor
ebook, 208 pages
Published November 6th 2012 by New Society Publishers (first published November 20th 2006)
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Sep 16, 2007 Hannah rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: the world
Shelves: must-read-again
Brilliant book that should be owned by anyone who wants to put their money where their mouth is, but don't know where to start.

This book is so handy and amazing that I'm planning on buying it in bulk to dole out over the holidays this year. Friends and family who are reading this, don't let the prospect of receiving this book as a gift stop you from buying a copy now - if you end up with two, you can always give one away!

The Better World Shopping Guide is a pocket-sized book that's small enough
It's more of a reference book, and a very handy one to return to see how businesses are rated according to personnel and environmental policies as well as financial.
Benjamin Plume
Buy this if you care about environmental and social responsibility. It's put together by a PH-D Sociologist who took data from a number of sources to grade brands of everything from automobiles and cell phones to veggies and eggs. It helps to identify some of the "who owns what" mystery, letting you know who you're supporting with your purchases. There's a ten best and ten worst list, and website references for just about everything. He gives you a rule of thumb for anything that didn't make it ...more
Robyn gave me this book. It rates several commonly purchased products (groceries, clothes, household items, etc.) and rates them according to their environmental, social, and political impact. For example, it will rate all the different brands of butter commonly found in grocery stores and give a grade to each one based on the manufacturering company's environmental footprint, their recent court losses, treatment of workers (fair wage, etc.) and other factors. It advocates using your pocketbook ...more
Nov 24, 2008 Alison rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who wants to make the planet better just by making small changes
This book is my bible. It grades companies from A to F on their social and environmental responsibility. It gives brands in all different categories: food, health/beauty, electronics, financial, gas, etc. It doesn't have every brand, but definitely gives a good foundation to start your shopping. I looked at their website before I bought the book and knew that they did extensive research to come up with the grades. I was initially disappointed because I thought that the research findings would be ...more
I was shocked to read in this book that, "Recently, the ILO, UNICEF and US State Department uncovered the widespread use of child slave labor in the chocolate industry - up to 40% of all chocolate is currently being produced in this way". This book has convinced me to undergo massive changes in which companies I support as a consumer. It's a good guide to take with you on your shopping trip or study before making large purchases. I wish that there was a more in-depth version. I understand the co ...more
Thomas Ray
Provides the useful service of showing which companies in each shopping category are environmentally responsible and respect workers' rights. Pocket-sized. Take along while shopping. Fourth edition, (c) 2012, ISBN 978-0-86571-724-4. Much of the information is also on the website, The 4th edition paperback and Kindle book were published Nov. 6, 2012. The website data is dated 2006. about the author
This is a very useful pocket guide to bring along shopping with you. It's very difficult to learn which companies are good and which are not, but here you have all of that information in front of you! The pages are divided into "report cards" that rate nearly all of the most common brands, as well as a few you may never have heard of. The categories are also easy to use and span from food (conveniently divided into Dairy, Meat, Baking Items, etc.) to cosmetics to computers, banks, cars, and so o ...more
Dec 06, 2010 Carlo rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: those who want a 'carry-along' guide to Buying Responsibly
Recommended to Carlo by: My Mom!
Excellent! Informative, Great for anyone that cares about justice, people, and our environment! Let us all hold the businesses and corporations socially & environmentally responsible for the way in which each conducts business (In accordance to the Supreme Court ruling that a corporation is a person I had to drop 'it's'. How does one identify the sex of the corporation? Male or Female?;-) . In our society of consumerism every dollar spent is a vote. This book helps one vote wisely! Everyone' ...more
My wonderful in laws sent me this little guide book recently as a gift. I have thoroughly enjoyed perusing it. The concept is that your dollars are your vote, so share them with socially and environmentally responsible companies. My husband and I were already pretty aware of where we spend our money (for example, most of our food comes from farmers markets), but I was unaware of just how bad some of the companies we supported really were. WOW! It has motivated me to do a complete overhaul of my ...more
Jan 24, 2008 Erin rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone - shop green, when you can
Shelves: nonfiction
This is one you really need to carry all the time, but I did read through the whole thing. Altria and Nabisco are the devil, and everyone should buy a Toyota or Lexus. I would like a Lexus, but I'll bet I get a Toyota.

I would really have appreciated some extended information. For example, Volvo (the last car I owned) wasn't included at all in the car section. And manufacturer names were listed, but typically not products (and I don't always know what brands Altria and Nabisco use).

A good, quic
Everyone must own this book! Not so much a read as a handheld guide to arm yourself whenever you go shopping. This book rates products and companies with the A-F grading system so you can be sure you've purchased with a clear conscience all products that are sustainable, eco-friendly and healthy and ensure you gave your dollar to a company that supports fair trade, sustainability, conservation, human rights and animal protection.
I checked this out from the library three different times because I kept trying to remember things I had read in it. It is really something to own--so I finally bought a copy. Fits in my purse and is a reminder that we vote with our wallets and every purchase we make makes a small difference somewhere in the world. Not meant to have comprehensive info--but enough to help you pick one brand over another in the store.
Althought I enjoy reading huge, scary books like "The End of Food" and taking lessons from them, this is really what I need when I actually go out to making my spending choices. This little book (a great size for a little purse) includes a lot of catagories and lots of consumer options (each rated on a scale from A - F). Would have liked to see ratings on more children's items (toys, in particular) and books/bookstores.
Hardly ever leaves my purse! Rates companies on a varieties of issues, including social and environmental awareness. Helps me spend my money in a more powerful way!

Informative quick lists- much more information available at

And, one of the video book reviews I shot for this book here:

tells much more info!

Eric Bridges
Helpful, but at the same time I sometimes wonder where these ratings are coming from. I know it's based on research that he's done. I just wish more of that research was available in this book, or at least online, so that you could make your own mind up if these companies deserve those letter grades. Still, the book is better than nothing and worth buying and browsing.
Mar 28, 2008 Olana rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone who buys items
Shelves: skimming-slowly
Everything you want to purchase can be looked up in this handy guide. Brands are rated by their environmental impact, human rights, animal protection, community involvement, corporate crime, discrimination, philanthropy, and employee treatment. It has aided many of my purchase decisions.
Handy book I received as a gift to use when you are grocery, cloth, etc. shopping. Purse-friendly. I wish the book had room for additions/updates in the back. Website could use some improvement.
This is a must-read and a must-take-with-you for all consumers attempting to make conscious decisions. Read it, hold on to it, and apply it by voting with your dollars.
I forgot that I had read this before. This is a great pocket guide for rating the best and the worst of various retailers. Lubriderm gets an F. Oh no!
Great Idea but doens't really expand upon anything...anywhere in the book. I suppose its just meant to be a pocket reference for the website.
Great book! Very informative. Everyone should own a copy and keep it with them when they shop. This book can help make a difference.
this book is AWESOME!!! I love this book, because it is fun as well as educational.
Highly recommended!!! Easy to use, laid out very well, very helpful.
I try and make all my consumer choices from this book!
Annie marked it as to-read
Apr 15, 2015
Andrea Read
Andrea Read marked it as to-read
Apr 08, 2015
Unquoted marked it as to-read
Apr 01, 2015
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