Last night was the Observer Ethical Awards ceremony, an opportunity to recognise campaigners, innovators and socially aware businesses. As usual, the list of nominees and winners is full of inspiring people and projects, and well worth a browse.
I wanted to mention a couple in a little more detail, as there are two winners this year that we’ve championed on the blog in the past. The People’s Supermarket won Local Retailer, for their entirely community-run supermarket. The London store invited local shoppers to become members of the supermarket, and keeps prices low by using volunteer staff. It’s a bold and risky idea, and I’m sure plenty of people told them it was ridiculous, so well done to them for their first year of business and for the award. (my earlier post)
I was also pleased to see that Greg Valerio won Global Campaigner. Greg has pioneered ethical gold through his jewellery company CRED, and the first Fairtrade certified gold went on sale on Valentine’s day. It’s been a long struggle in a complicated business, and it’s been great to see ethical gold break through this year.
Among several other projects, I really like Pavegen. They have developed a system for kinetic paving slabs, generating electricity from pedestrians as they go about their business. It’s these kind of projects that the future is made of.