Being a responsible consumer is about more than just buying stuff to boost the economy. We spend a great deal of time studying consumer psychology (because we’re the kind of folks who are easily obsessed by such things) and its relation to things like mobile phone recycling. We’re experts in our field, and love what we do because the end result means everyone wins – you get some cash for your mobile, we get to refurbish your phone, and your long-serving little Motorola gets a new life in a struggling economy such as India, parts of China or Africa.
Sensible consumption is about two things – buying responsibly and ethically, and buying in line with your personal circumstances. For example, buying a bunch of stuff on credit you have little hope of paying off is not responsible consumption.
• Think about “need” rather than “want”. This is particularly applicable to folks who don’t have trust funds to spend on fancy smartphones and Swarovski iPhone covers! Of course, life is a little better when we can treat ourselves, but making sure the cold hard cash is there to spend should be the first deciding factor.
• Be ethical and sensible. For example, re-using carrier bags or buying a long-term carrier bag is both sensible and ethical (as long as you remember to use it!) Avoid non-ethical companies to demonstrate that shady business is not acceptable.
• Recycling is an important part of being a responsible consumer. Recycle old mobiles, give away old clothes, separate paper and plastic – it’s all about giving and take!
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