The fight against HIV/AIDS is very closed to my heart not because of celebrities and nonprofit’s intensive campaigns against the disease but because I know people who lost the fight. I would never say no to an HIV campaign because it’s a very emotional topic and I know how hard it is to live in Africa when you are HIV positive. Plus, I used to be a heavy coffee drinker and I was addicted to Starbucks. What does coffee have to do with HIV? Watch this:
Can conscious consumption really be a substitute to charitable giving? Let’s find out.
- My annual contribution to the HIV cause is $100.
- Let’s assume I still drink Starbucks coffee. Whenever I buy a coffee, I have the power to make Starbucks pay 5 cents to a nonprofit organization that fights against HIV (The Global Fund).
- My caramel Frappuccino used to cost me around 5$.
In order to make my annual contribution of $100, I would have to drink 2,000 Frappucinos a year or 5,47 Frappuccinos a day. WOW that’s a lot of coffee (and calories)! In addition, since the campaign does not run all year-round, I would have to double, or triple my coffee load to make sure I reach the $100 threshold by the end of the campaign. This is just not working and imagine how many coffees I would have to drink if I was just the regular $1.50 coffee drinker!
The only way to achieve my goal would be:
- either Starbucks increases its unit contribution to 10 or 20 cents
- or better, Starbucks’ contribution becomes a percentage of how much I spend
Let’s be real, there is a limit to Starbucks generosity first because they have to make profits right? Plus, they can care less about my $100 contribution, they still have to pay they staff and other expenses.
It would be hard to substitute conscious consumption to charitable giving.
- even if I have the power to make Starbucks pay 5 cents, I have no control to which charity, country or program Starbucks is transferring our money.
- This «transactional partnership» does not give Starbucks enough time to explain why they do this? how they do it? and which results they got?
- This campaign is not an incentive to change my habits. How about the tons of plastic containers I will use? is my Frappuccino made of fair trade coffee? I don’t know.
It’s good to be a conscious consumer I also have to be a smart donor : my charitable gifts have more long term impacts than me buying my Frappucinos. I guess I am going to stick to my $100 annual gift system and eventually make «extra gifts» by stuffing my face with Frappuccinos.