Business And Environmental Issues Term Paper

Length: 2 pages Subject: Transportation - Environmental Issues Type: Term Paper Paper: #90908765 Related Topics: Environmental Issues, Cognitive Dissonance, Vegetarian, Recycling
Excerpt from Term Paper :

¶ … President of Big Bags, I would make a couple of points with respect to our product. While plastic bags have been cast as villains, articles such as those by Bruce Smith of Green Earth paint only one side of the story. I am writing this op-ed in order to tell our side of the story.

The first thing that I would like the audience to know is that Big Bags, Inc. is not just a supplier of plastic bags. We supply a wide range of plastic products. Shopping bags are among those product, but so too are sandwich bags, garbage bags, and the little bags they have out at the dog park for picking up dog…stuff. Arguably, there has to be a certain amount of cognitive dissonance to take issue with plastic shopping bags, when there are clearly many other products made from plastic that nobody is concerned about.

Further to this point, many other plastic products also, like plastic shopping bags, have non-plastic alternatives. Many destructive products in general have substitutes. While it is true that consumers can use canvas bags, should they so desire, they may also opt for bicycles over cars, vegetarian diets over omnivore diets, and other similar substitutions. I would point out that even if one accepts Smith's points about plastic bags as gospel -- more on that in a minute -- that they still must recognize there is a tremendous amount of


Plastic bags are in common used because that is what consumers want. In America, we strive to have markets that are as free as possible for regulation. We as a society believe that consumers can make their own choices, and should have the ability to do so. As a corporation, Big Bag, Inc. has never lied to consumers about what our product is, how it is made, or what happens when the product's life cycle is complete. Consumers have access to information on the Internet -- they should be free to make their own informed decisions about the trade-offs that they wish to make, rather than have government make the choice for them. If people wish to be selfish and sacrifice their grandchildren so that they don't have to carry a cloth bag to the store, that should be their right.

Smith is also misinformed…

Sources Used in Documents:

Smith further claims that our plastic bags are cluttering up landfills. He cites that one billion bags are not recycled each year. We take issue with that claim. Our bags are recyclable, and in jurisdictions that have plastic recycling programs, nearly 60% of our bags are diverted away from the landfill, at least until they have been used to clean the litter box or down at the dog park. The reality is that even when one of our bags ends up in the landfill, it has often been used multiple times, usually for some other form of waste. A like-for-like comparison would be to compare such bags to the thicker, heavier garbage bags that also end up in the landfill.

It is also worth pointing out that there are some errors with respect to Smith's claims about Big Bag, Inc. And our corporate social responsibility record. We pay many of our employees a living wage, for one, and provide them with an opportunity to buy health insurance under the Affordable Care Act. We were a pioneer in the hiring of minorities, and many of our plants are overrepresented in terms of most minority groups. We even serve a Christmas ham each year, as a token of appreciation, and starting in 2014 we offered a pork-free alternative for our Jewish and Muslim employees. We are a family-oriented company that truly values our workers and treats them well. We were ranked in the Top 50 employers in Southwest Des Moines in 2004, an award that stands as testament to our hard work. We have even gone 183 days without a workplace accident, the sign outside the factory tells me.

So while Bruce Smith launches his one-sided screed against our company, I can assure the readers of the New York Times that Big Bag Inc. works with government to provide recycling options for our bags, we have an excellent track record of corporate social responsibility, and quite frankly, we make a product that most Americans choose to utilize, because it is the best product of its kind.

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