While you’re likely familiar with Black Friday and its many spin-offs, Click Frenzy, Singles Day and Cyber Monday, all of which incentivise consumer spending in November, there’s a good chance you’ve never heard of Green Friday.
The four-day event is in its second year — this year, partnering with Hero Packaging, Sendle, ReleaseIt and this very publication, The Latch.
Green Friday encourages Australian consumers to avoid getting caught up in the shopping frenzy, and instead, to shop sustainable and ethical offers with consideration and mindfulness. It does this by shining a spotlight on Australian retailers and brands who operate within the sustainable, re-commerce or the circular economy space.
Ahead, we share everything else you need to know about Green Friday, including how to take part.
What Is Green Friday?
While Green Friday is an official event here in Australia, it originated as a movement that flipped the narrative on the chaotic consumption period in the lead-up to Christmas. The movement encourages shoppers to buy with consideration and mindfulness, either by buying only from sustainable and ethical brands or by not buying anything at all.
Some reports say the movement began in Canada in 1992 and was first called “Buy Nothing Day”. In Australia, the official Green Friday event is by the founders of online rental marketplace RealeaseIt, Peter Krideras and Stephen Kulmar. More info on it can be found on the official Green Friday site.
When Is Green Friday?
In Australia, Green Friday will run from Friday, November 18 – Monday, November 21.
Why Is Green Friday So Important?
So, why should you care? Well, just a quick look at the stats should show you: 90% of Australian households have unwanted or unused items, 80% of household plastics and textiles are landfilled and $80 billion in fashion purchases end up in landfill each year. And, probably the most startling stat of all, in a climate change performance review of 64 countries, Australia ranked last.
How Can You Get Involved?
There are a few things you can do to get involved in Green Friday. If you do still want to shop in November, you might try to only buy from sustainable and ethical brands, checking out the official Green Friday site or doing some Googling to find out what those brands are, being careful, of course, of greenwashing. You can check out our sustainable clothing term glossary here. You might also try asking yourself, ‘do I really need this or am I just buying it because it’s on sale?’.
Personally, when it comes to clothing, I try to buy only pieces in neutral colours and timeless styles, as I’ve found those are the items I have for years. I’m also continually working on a capsule wardrobe so I only have one or two good quality versions of every staple outfit piece — one good pair of heels, one good blazer, one pair of sneakers, one versatile black dress, one white tee, etc.
Should You Not Shop At All in November?
Here’s the thing: if everyone stopped shopping, we’d be putting companies out of business, and likely the smaller, local businesses first. So, participating in the movement doesn’t have to mean to shop shopping entirely — it simply means stopping yourself from getting swept away in the sale frenzy in this pre-holidays period, and being more conscious about what you’re adding to cart. If everyone did that, when it came to landfills and climate change, Australia would be in a much better place.
Why Does The Latch’s Partnership With Green Friday Mean?
The Latch will be giving brands the platform to showcase where they are at on their sustainability journey and feature sustainable products, vetted by its editors on its e-commerce discovery platform, BuyGood.
“We’ve built a community of readers focused on discovering how they can live a more sustainable life, and drive change within their communities,” says publisher Amanda Bardas. “This partnership with Green Friday helps drive home this message, by focusing on brands to help you make more sustainable choices when shopping.”
Every participating brand must complete Green Friday’s sustainability framework before being accepted for the initiative, so consumers can then choose to support brands that align with what matters to them, including environmental policies, sustainable certifications and more.
Want more stories about Green Friday? You can find them here.