Posts Tagged ‘Amazon Rainforest’

Tropicana & 100 Square Feet of Rainforest

March 5, 2009
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Image via Wikipedia

Over on the Freakonomics blog Steven Levitt highlights a campaign being run by Tropicana in the US. Whereby each carton of Tropicana Orange Juice (maybe others?) has a unique code, which when entered on their special TropicanaRainforest.com website will result in Tropicana preserving 100 square feet of rainforest.

While highlighting their own environmental awareness they are also enabling their customers to feel good about themselves in also making a difference. Now Steven Levitt roughly estimates that it probably would cost 11 cents to buy 100 square feet of Amazon rainforest, but because in developed countries land prices are much greater and this results in a very wide disparity between the perceived cost and its actual cost. And this disparity allows Tropicana to appear to be doing many times more (in cost terms only) than they actually are.

From their FAQ section it says that Tropicana are donating money on the customer’s behalf:

…donate money to Cool Earth, who sponsors and protects it for a minimum of ten years. Tropicana and Cool Earth will be working with The Ashaninka, one of the largest surviving Amazon ethnic groups, to protect an area of rainforest in Peru. Sponsoring the protection of a piece of rainforest means Cool Earth and its partner Ecotribal can work with the Ashaninka to secure rainforest and all the environmental services that the forest provides.

When people think of Tropicana and orange juice, they probably think of Floridian oranges. But in recent years Tropicana have expanded production massively (under PepsiCo’s ownership) in S. America and India.

I say this: Carry on doing what you are doing, if it costs you a little to make a small difference in a small part of the Amazon Rainforest, but boosts sales then everyone wins.

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