Sometimes I am approached to write product reviews for my blog. I like to be as impartial as possible, but on the other hand I like to keep it positive on my blog, so I only accept those offers that I am genuinely interested in and think I will be able to write about enthusiastically. I hope that explains my thinking somewhat, and also why there is a lack of harsh criticism on here.
Anyway, recently I was contacted about the launch of MyIce, which is an ethical loyalty rewards scheme based on the internet. Basically, you go to their website, log in, follow links to a variety of different ethical shops and collect points, known as Ice, as you shop. You can later spend that Ice on products from the same shops. What I like, which is better than other rewards programmes, is that you can use you Ice in part payment for products as well. There are an impressive number of businesses already signed up and more to come, so you can buy everything from big ticket furniture items from Eat Sleep Live to little foodie treats from Foodari or Green and Black’s. You can even get Ice points on your Eurostar tickets.
I was credited with enough points on my account to buy a Green & Black’s selection box, which I haven’t even opened yet but I don’t need to – I’m a big Green & Black’s fan.
Which brings me to my next point. The above statement about reviews notwithstanding, sometimes I get a little disappointed. Last week I was emailed by a PR about the new Sainsbury’s Taste The Difference range. I’m not a big supermarket shopper but Sainsbury’s is my local so I do pop in from time to time. Anyway, I was offered some of the new Taste The Difference single origin Fairtrade chocolate. I accepted, because as I told the PR, I only buy Fairtrade chocolate and I’m very into single origin choc.
However, the chocolate, when it arrived, was Swiss Milk Chocolate (not single origin), with no sign of a Fairtrade certification mark anywhere.
Update: The PR for Sainsbury’s sent me a replacement bar of the single origin Fairtrade chocolate. I have to admit it was pretty tasty. Very smooth texture and nice, complex flavour, not too bitter. I wish they would make all of their chocolate fair trade!