Understanding Sustainability Means Talking About Colonialism


Global trade routes 1880-1914

“…world trade routes are mostly the same as they were 150 years ago at the height of European colonial exploitation. In the same way that colonized nations provided cheap sugar, chocolate, coffee, and fruit to the West, ‘developing’ nations now provide cheap semi-disposable clothes to the West and global economic upper classes.”

Interesting read on the intersections of sustainability and colonialism. Semaan’s main focus is the fashion industry, but a lot of her points are relevant in terms of the global food trade as well. I particularly appreciate her point that buying in a sustainable and socially-conscious way doesn’t have to mean spending more money. I read this several weeks ago and it has stuck with me, so I figured I’d share! Read the whole article below:


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