What Hedonethics Means to Me

In no particular order...
  • Buying only organic, free range or well-managed wild meat and eggs, ensuring that animals are reared with care and slaughtered without cruelty
  • Getting organic dairy products from healthy, well treated cows /sheep /goats
  • Rejecting foodstuffs where battery eggs or intensively farmed dairy or meat may have been used, such as pre-packaged egg mayo sandwiches that don't state "free range"
  • Buying pink RSPCA veal, which provides a market for otherwise sadly "non-marketable" male dairy calves, ensuring they have a life and are well treated
  • Buying line-caught, sustainable fish, from managed fisheries
  • Eating organic fruit, veg, mushrooms and herbs, to reduce the use of pesticides, ensure the land is well managed and that farmers are paid decently for their hard work, allowing them to act on their respect for the wildlife, the soil and plants near their farm
  • Paying a fair price for conversion produce, to help farmers convert to organic farming methods without going bankrupt
  • Buying fair trade products such as coffee, tea, sugar, spices, cocoa powder and chocolate
  • Using eco-friendly household cleaners, avoiding bleach and phosphates
  • Using recycled kitchen & loo roll, biodegradeable bin liners and making the most of local recycling facilities
  • Choosing produce with little, no or recyclable packaging, reusing plastic containers
  • Eating seasonally and where possible, locally, to reduce food air miles. Signing up for a veg box scheme is ideal.
  • When choosing cut flowers, trying to buy local and in-season blooms. If the choices are limited, looking for a fair trade label.
  • Trying not to waste food
  • Planting bee, butterfly, bird and insect friendly plants in windowboxes or the garden
  • Not littering parks and other greenland areas. Picking up other people's litter where possible.
  • Supporting honeybee farmers: without their efforts to combat viral threats and manage hives skillfully, we could see our bee populations decimated
  • Turning off lights and electrical devices when not in use
  • Buying wood products stamped by the FSC or otherwise proven to be from sustainable sources, including charcoal for the barbecue
  • Switching to non-animal tested cosmetics and toiletries. Buying organic toiletries with natural ingredients where possible, including sanitaries.
  • Avoiding ingredients such as palm oil, the production of which contributes towards deforestation
  • Taking items like shoes and household goods to be repaired wherever possible, rather than immediately throwing them away and buying new ones
  • Mending damaged clothing and donating old items in good condition. Recycling or re-deploying (as dusters, in a quilt etc) fabrics too worn to wear
  • Trying to support local small businesses, such as the family run high street drycleaners, bookshop, shoe shop and clothing store, using the local grocery shop and hairdressers, rather than doing everything at huge shopping centres
  • Writing to companies enquiring where their ingredients come from, and not purchasing their goods if their ingredients sound suspect 
  • Asking myself what really makes a person, institution or company behave poorly or anti-socially. Trying not to judge individuals, instead considering what deeper issues need to be addressed in order to facilitate changes that will benefit everyone
  • Reducing the risk of developing allergies, irritating the skin and lowering our immune systems by accepting that a little bit of dirt won't hurt us! Coating our home in disinfectants and filling it with fake scents might do though...
  • Eating "real" foods, not polluting the body and damping the spirit with foul tasting, chemical laden substitutes
  • Cooking food at home wherever possible, from fresh seasonal ingredients. Tastes better than pre-packaged, long-life, factory-made gack.
  • Keeping family and guest's diets varied, interesting and delicious
  • Learning how to cook food from other countries and as a result learning about other cultures and peoples
  • Getting exposed to unusual fruit and veg, and great local produce, that might not have made it onto supermarket shelves
  • Eating is supposed to be enjoyable - discovering that every meal can be a delight for the eyes, tastebuds and tummy adds a new dimension to daily living
  • Becoming confident and independent in the kitchen, regardless of what ingredients are in the house or what a recipe book has dictated
  • Thinking "I wish I could make that at home" and then going home and actually doing it
  • Cooking is a creative, skillful art form. Getting better at it is immensely satisfying and life affirming
  • Saving money by creating (better tasting!) similes of common takeaway and restaurant menu items, and making packed lunches
  • Controlling diet part 1 - more fish, vegetables, fruit, nuts, pulses and all the other healthy things we are supposed to eat, without resorting to a boring diet of steamed bulgar wheat and rice cakes
  • Controlling diet part 2 - fat, sugar and salt used to season foods at home will never come close to the amounts included in ready meals, takeaways and other pre-made foods
  • Avoiding dodgy preservatives, MSG, lecithins, sulphites, palm oil, acefulfame k, aspartame and all the other crap used by companies to give packaged foods a long shelf life and give them some flavour, without having to pay for quality ingredients
  • Creating a warm, comforting home environment - the smells of home cooking have a special happy quality to them
  • Real food is more social! I happen to agree with old Ramsey on the Sunday lunch factor: sitting down to eat a homecooked meal with family and friends is one of the nicest ways there is to spend an evening.