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The Fairtrade Easter Egg Hunt

Lots of small Divine Fairtrade Easter Eggs in gold patterned foil

If you leave your Easter egg shopping to the last minute, you must expect to have to hunt around for the best eggs, particularly if you are after Fairtrade Easter Eggs. Oxfam stores are always a good bet, but then, that’s where everyone else is looking for their Fairtrade chocolate too, so this close to…

PUL Fabric For Your Nappy Covers

PUL fabric, or Polyurethane laminate, is the most commonly used material for making nappy (diaper) covers. It is very popular largely because it is very water-proof but breathable at the same time. For that reason, PUL is also used in the lining of pocket and all-in-one nappies. PUL was orginally developed for medical use, where…

Update on Bamboo Fabric (How Sustainable Is It?)

According to a recent article in the Australian Choice Magazine, the soft “bamboo” fabrics on the market are actually rayon, or viscose – two names for the same fibre made from the cellulose in plants like bamboo. This is the fibre produced with the harsh chemical treatment discussed in my earlier article on bamboo nappies,…

Antibiotics in Animal Feed Create “Super Bugs”

In a paper published last month in Environmental Health Perspectives, experts explain how administering medicine through animal fodder can cause antibiotic resistant bacteria to develop. “If they don’t get all their food, they don’t get all the medicine, and if they don’t get all the medicine, then the whole bacteria population isn’t wiped out, and…

Full Range of Fairtrade Chocolate

Some, but not yet all, of Green & Black’s organic chocolate bars are fairtrade certified. But they have announced that not only are they on track to met their pledge of being entirely Fairtrade by the end of 2011, and in the UK they have already achieved that goal. This includes both chocolate bars and…

Why I Love Modern Cloth Nappies

Cute baby wearing a lion Starbunz pocket diaper

Since Marion Donovan first invented disposable nappies in 1950 (and sold her company for $1 million a few years later), they have become the standard form of ‘diapering’ in the Western world. Back when my first child was born in 2002 I was one of only a few women I knew using tradition terry cloth…

Simply in Season: Buy Local, Think Global, Cook Seasonal

Simply in Season book cover

Only a decade ago I couldn’t get the grapes my pregnant body craved because they were out of season. Yet now I spend perhaps a third of the year refusing to buy my children the grapes they can see in the supermarket because they are grown in the USA and imported to Australia, where we live; we are trying to buy local at least to the extent of buying produce grown in our own country. Though when Australian grown mangoes appear in the shops in Spring, I must conclude that they have travelled thousands of kilometres south to where we are still huddled beneath our thick quilts on frosty nights.

Buy Local, Think Global. It is a slogan that represents the local food movement and is becoming well known as we consider the fossil fuels burned and carbon emissions released when we fly grapes half way across the world so we can have the convenience of eating them year round. Before the long months of nausea in my first pregnancy, when I craved juicy oranges and mandarins and the elusive grapes, I had little awareness of the seasonal nature of produce.

Prefold Cloth Nappies

Flat and prefold cloth nappies (or diapers) are the least expensive of the modern cloth nappy family, but by no means the worse for it. Prefold nappies are really just as easy to use as pocket diapers, and  no more likely to leak, as long as you have a good nappy cover. While prefolds can…

Using Fitted Cloth Nappies

Three colourful bamboo fitted cloth diapers

Fitted cloth diapers (also called fitted cloth nappies) are a version of the modern cloth diaper that is easy to use and generally highly absorbent. They are better for the environment than disposable diapers (the jury really is not out on this anymore*) and many people claim their babies get less diaper rash with cloth than with disposables.