Online shoppers have come to expect express, 2-day, and even same-day shipping as the norm when shopping online. These unsustainable and unhealthy shipping expectations have made us feel like having to wait a few extra days or even a week for an order to arrive at our doorstep is just too long because we need to have it NOW. But, the truth is that express shipping isn’t a sustainable business model for people fulfilling your order or the planet that has to find ways to absorb all that extra carbon dioxide from unrealistically fast shipping.
That’s why at Made Trade we don’t offer express, or 2-day, or same-day shipping. That’s a business model where no one wins — not in the long term anyway. We simply offer Standard Shipping which means that your order will almost always arrive in 3-5 business days. We know, total shocker, right?
We emphasize sustainability and equity above big profits, so choosing not to offer express shipping was an easy decision for us to make. Here’s our full take on why express shipping isn’t sustainable, and why the ethical and sustainable goods you buy on Made Trade are worth the wait.
It’s a harsh truth that nearly everything we do contributes to a carbon footprint, and transportation emissions are one of the biggest contributors. In fact, transportation emissions contribute to a whopping 29% of total US greenhouse gas emissions.
Since October of 2019, Made Trade has offset all carbon emissions from transportation by purchasing carbon credits, and we’re adamant about not passing the cost of carbon offset shipping and returns onto our customers. Made Trade is also Climate Neutral Certified, meaning that we fully offset the carbon emissions of all of the products ordered, our shipping to the customer, and any returns from the customer. Not only that, but the majority of our orders still deliver in 3-5 business days despite not being “express.”
When you place an order elsewhere on the internet and choose express or one-day shipping, delivery trucks and airplanes have to fly even if they’re not at full capacity just to get you the item you requested in the time you were promised. In comparison, if the window for shipping is just a little longer, shipping companies can wait to send out their trucks and vehicles until they’ve efficiently consolidated your order with all the other items they need to deliver. Reducing carbon footprint, that’s one of the reasons why it’s worth the wait for your package to arrive.
Having a longer window for shipping also prevents the workers who package and deliver your products to have to put themselves at risk to get orders and packages out in unrealistic timelines. On many large e-commerce websites when you order a product and select “fast shipping,” the workers who package, transport, and deliver your products are required to adhere to strict deadlines and quick turnaround times to make sure your order arrives in the promised window. Sadly the “Buy It Now” button can come with a human price — one that compromises safe working conditions and practices.
We want to make sure that the delivery and warehouse workers in charge of our packages are receiving sufficient breaks to eat and rest, and aren’t overworking themselves to the point of fatigue, exhaustion, or the increased risk of injury. It’s simply not worth the convenience of fast delivery if the working conditions are potentially detrimental to workers’ health or safety. The human on the other end of the order — another reason it’s worth the wait for your package.
Ethical products. Delivered sustainably and equitably.
At Made Trade, we carry stunningly beautiful handcrafted products from around the world which are often made using slow processes and traditional crafting techniques that are generations-old. Artisans and makers take immense pride and care to ensure the highest quality while making their products, and it simply isn’t possible to expertly craft their wares at faster rates without sacrificing that quality.
Made-to-order products also need extra time and attention to produce. By carrying products that are made to order, manufacturers can ensure that there is demand for a product before they create it, which prevents unnecessary waste in regards to materials and labor for an item that may not be sold.
Similar to how we do not want delivery workers to overwork themselves, we want to ensure that the artisans and makers who create the products for you to enjoy are working in safe and healthy work environments with reasonable expectations for their work as well. From makers who work with metal and copper to weavers and seamstresses who produce blankets or shoes, the safety and comfort of the maker are another aspect that needs to be taken into careful consideration.
We hold the brands and products we carry to very high ethical and sustainable standards, and we don’t think those standards stop once you place your order. From production to transportation, to delivery, we do our best to make decisions that are beneficial for the planet and the people along the way who are helping get your product to you.
Sometimes the anticipation and excitement leading up to your order arriving are half the joy of shopping online. Plus, it’s good to exercise a little patience in the name of ethical and sustainable goods that put people and our planet first.
Thanks for shopping responsibly on Made Trade, and if you’re looking for something that ships out quickly — but not too quickly — explore all the beautiful products in our quick ship collection.