While it may be 2022, the days of unethical labor practices are not yet over. When I started Rooted, I wanted to feel good about the items that we carried in my shop and know that we were making an impact in our local community and other small businesses.
We often see cheap home decor and gifts and don't think about where it comes from and why it's so inexpensive. The unfortunate truth is that while we'd like to think that it's because it's all machines doing all the work, the reality is that it is because many people are paid menial wages in less that ideal working conditions. The modern day sweat shop is still very much a thing.
In just one example, China has been accused of forcing Uyghur Muslims into labor camps and detention centers to work in factories that produce goods for well known brands such as Apple, Nike, BMW, Samsung, Sony and Volkswagen (according to Forbes).
We would like to think that these popular brands would be doing their due-diligence to ensure these terrible labor practices were not in their supply chain, however it has be alleged that it is not the case. And for some of these brands, this is not the first accusation. See this article about Foxconn.
The reality is that we still need to be very conscious about what and who we buy from. We don't preach perfectionism at Rooted. We understand that we live in a world surrounded by choices and information is often limited about what it is that we are actually buying.
However, we do hope to provide education on the topic in order for our customers to make more informed choices about where they shop and to always be a space that they can feel confident that they are doing good with their money when they purchase from us.