Ethical Consumer

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Ethical Consumer
Year founded1989
CompanyEthical Consumer Research Association
Based inManchester, England

Ethical Consumer is a not-for-profit UK magazine and website which publishes information on the social, ethical and environmental behaviour of companies and issues around trade justice and ethical consumerism. It was founded in 1989 by Rob Harrison and Jane Turner.[1][2]


The mission of the Ethical Consumer is to promote "a society where the environment is respected, where human rights are properly protected and where animals are no longer cruelly exploited."[3] The Ethical Consumer publishes reports and calls for boycotts of companies deemed unethical by its findings.


Ethical Consumer magazine and its associated websites are produced by the Ethical Consumer Research Association (ECRA). Between 1989 and 2009 ECRA was a worker co-operative, based in Manchester, UK. In 2009 ECRA became a not-for-profit multi-stakeholder co-operative consisting of worker members and investor/subscriber members. It is an industrial and provident society.[4]

Company ratings[edit]

Ethical Consumer publishes a company ratings tables which rate various products across 19 criteria.[5] The data behind the ratings tables is produced by research into the social, ethical and environmental records of companies, using media reporting, NGO reports, corporate communications and primary research.

Other activities[edit]

The Corporate Critic website provides access to ECRA's database, tracking over 30,000 companies, providing information such as rating, ownership structure and turnover.

ECRA also undertakes consultancy and research[6] on behalf of NGOs and corporate clients as well as providing a screening service.[7] Clients have included: Amnesty International, Cafédirect, Christian Aid, Comic Relief, The Co-operative Bank, British Red Cross, Consumer Focus, Ecology Building Society, International Consumer Research and Testing, Friends of the Earth, Glasgow Caledonian University, Lush, Médecins Sans Frontières, Natural History Museum, Oxfam, The Guardian, the Soil Association, Vegetarian Society, WaterAid, Women's Institutes and WWF.


  1. ^ Shanta Barley (14 September 2010). "Vote for your unsung green hero". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 15 December 2011.
  2. ^ Tim Hunt (June 2010). "Workers of the world, co-operate!". Retrieved 15 December 2011.
  3. ^ "Our manifesto".
  4. ^ "Co-op Structure". Retrieved 15 December 2011.
  5. ^ "Quick Guide to using Ethical Consumer". Retrieved 15 December 2011.
  6. ^ "Consultancy & Research". Retrieved 15 December 2011.
  7. ^ "Company Screenings". Retrieved 15 December 2011.

External links[edit]