A Year without Plastics: The Good Trade PH Celebrates their 1 st Anniversary

The number one problem of our oceans today (aside from sovereignty) is the alarming amount of plastic waste, and it being ingested by marine life. So, how do we refrain from using plastic when most of the goods are either wrapped in plastic or encased in it? In this generation where cleanup drives and rebuilding our environment matter, how do we solve this plastic problem?

                There are different merchants offering plastic-free goods that could help us start leaving plastic use behind, but without support or proper guidance, it may be hard to live a life free from it. This is why there are communities and organizations dedicated to helping us start this eco-friendly lifestyle. One of which is celebrating their anniversary this July: The Good Trade PH.

The Good Trade PH is a zero-waste and sustainable fair that gathers almost 100 purpose-driven brands in Manila. It is founded and organized by Jana Bunagan, who also spearheads Create Good, an NGO that transforms useless clutter to useful things through initiatives that give back to the community. Create Good’s ultimate dream is to help create a closed-loop economy that values materials, people, and the planet. She started The Good Trade PH with the intention of giving back, and created an online campaign to put together merchants and community of buyers., “As I host more and more Street Stores (a free pop up shop for the needy stocked by donations), I realized that I actually carve out time during weekends to make a positive impact. That’s when it hit me that that shouldn’t be the case; making an impact shouldn’t be a one time, big time thing rather it should be a habitual, continuous effort. Now I make small decisions with great love no matter the day; I live with less waste and when needed, purchase products from purpose-driven brands that care for both the people and the planet.” Jana said when asked about her inspiration behind creating the community.

The Good Trade PH aims to prove that sustainability isn’t just a trend in Manila as they believe that people choose to help out if they are given the chance. While their fairs are mostly based in the metro, they have merchants who work with communities from Abra, Cebu, Mindanao, and La Union. Their community and movement are growing because of the commitment and overwhelming support of advocates to make better choices. They make the zero-waste lifestyle relevant because of their pure intention to enable and empower consumers to live a “life that’s good and does good.” Since its establishment in July 2018, they have hosted almost 10 fairs, collaborated with hundreds of merchants, and have saved thousands of clothes and plastics from being dumped into our landfills.

As The Good Trade PH celebrates their first anniversary we asked them what their goal is for the years to come. “Hopefully one day, embracing an ethical-eco ethos becomes a standard rather than as an add on. For this to happen, consumers have to be immersed in the story instead of just buying products. The Good Trade PH aims to fill the gap in storytelling on top of encouraging them to close the loop through recycling/repairing/donating existing items. At the end of the day, people have to become more aware if we want to be sustainable. At the end of the day, it has to be a movement,” Jana passionately answered.

Zero-waste lifestyle enthusiasts and first-timers alike shouldn’t miss the chance to celebrate with The Good Trade PH. Go to their anniversary event with #AllTheGoodStuff! They kickstarted July with their Plastic Free July Pledge, and on July 19 to 21, they’re going to have The Good Trade Fair at Central Square in Bonifacio Global City. Repair stations will be at the venue for your cherished items and donations for recycling.

Having a zero-waste lifestyle takes getting used to, but it’s something that people are gradually working on. The Good Trade PH is a community that fosters an environment geared towards positive change and they believe that even though there are limited resources, there is a greater opportunity to grow as long as we take these small steps together.

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Nicole Galleon

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