What is Ethical Food?

"What would the person I want to be
do in this situation?"

Ethical consumption
Ethical consumption is all about factoring in where stuff comes from and how it was produced when making our consumption decisions.

It's about using our spending power to support the stuff we want to see more of in the world.

So for example, if you don't support sweatshop labour, you might choose to purchase fair-trade products. If you don't support battery hens, you might choose to purchase free-range eggs.

Ethical Food
Is it really true that we are what we eat? If it were - what would our food choices say about us?

What makes food ethical anyway?

Cooking with a conscience means shopping with a conscience.
At CwaC we customise our menus to customer needs, but we especially love food which is...

vegetarian, green, fair-trade, local, organic, non-GE,
culturally sustainable, ethically marketed,

minimally packaged and cruelty free.

If you want some more food for thought on these issues, click on the links on the right under "Food Issues".

If you would like to know more about ethical consumption in general, have a look at the Ethical Consumer Guide. Their criteria page is a great overview / starting point for anyone wondering how ethical consumption can be assessed. Or if you just wanna cut to the chase, have a look at their supermarket buying guide.

Peter Singer and Jim Mason's book The Ethics of What We Eat, is a great read too.

Surprisingly accessible and easy to read, the book starts with a standard meal enjoyed by three very different families and trace its ingredients back through the production process to see what ethical issues arise. Containing essential information on ethical but practical shopping and dining, The Ethics of What We Eat will forever change the way you look at food.

Too hard basket?
If ethical consumption appeals to you, but the practial realities and information overload make it seem impossible, we can totally relate!
We began the adventure of sustainable eating with great passion:
how wonderful to seek out environmentally and socially sustainable foods which might just be more healthy and better tasting into the bargain.

After all, we naively thought...
how hard can it be to eat for a small planet?

After several years of research, the passion is still there, but the flippancy has mellowed a bit.

The organic industry and sustainable eating movement is still small in Western Australia and supply of many products can be intermittent and expensive.

The more we learn about the complexities and contradictions of what makes food sustainable, the less we feel we can say for sure. Sustainable food is a messy, blurry, debatable area where there are few absolutes.
  • Is it better to purchase an “organic” tomato if the only certified one available was shipped across the world and comes in three layers of plastic?
  • Is it better to purchase “locally grown” rice, irrigated in drought-stricken Australia, or to import it from our higher rainfall neighbours?
  • Is it better to purchase an “organic” brand from a multi-national corporation or a non-certified product grown by a small independent producer?
Also, facing a moral dilema every time you get the tummy-rumbles can be pretty disconcerting!

We reckon food should be fun, delicous, easy, nourishing and affirming - and it's gotta be affordable too!

Even for people who care about the planet and are interested in sustainability issues, ethical consumption can seem all too hard sometimes. How can we possibly know enough to factor in all the complexities of social and environmental sustainability every time we want a quick sandwich?

The good news is, you don't have to know it all to make a difference!

Never let the fact that you can't do everything,
stop you from doing something!

No one has all the answers - but everyone can contribute.

CwaC is about all the wonderful foods we CAN eat.

It's about celebrating sustainable food and showcasing / creating demand for some of the delcious sustainable produce available.

Baby Steps
Why not choose an issue that interests you and take one small step today. Some easy small steps towards ethical consumption are:

How sustainable / ethical is CwaC?

CwaC is not about having all the answers to sustainable food.
It’s about having fun and eating well while gently sautéing the questions.

Like any good recipe, the trick is balance. In particular, our important sustainability priorities need to be carefully integrated with our other key priority: to provide affordable food for non-profit organisations.

So, we guarantee food is vegetarian and free-range. Beyond that we promise to shop consciously and opt for the most workable mix of local, fair-trade, organic, non-GE, low packaging and affordable - depending on the customer's priorities and budget.

If you have particular requirement such as “all organic” let us know and we will quote accordingly. Otherwise you will be trusting us to select the most sustainable mix of produce based on what is available at the time at an affordable price.

Did I mention fun, original and delicious?

Yum, yum, yum

Come and meet us in the kitchen.