A national campaign encouraging consumers to buy Irish goods on one of the busiest shopping days of the year – the last Friday in November – has been launched. The call to buy Irish, gift green and support Irish-made goods and services this Christmas is intended to keep money in circulation in the local economy, protecting jobs and public services.
As a nation we have enthusiastically embraced the American concepts of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. An estimated €250m is forecast to be spent by Irish shoppers on Black Friday, split almost equally between online and high street retailers. But if the nation chooses Green over Black this year, it will be the small independent shops and manufacturers which will benefit instead of the large corporations.
The #greenfriday initiative is backed by many trade associations including the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland, Retail Excellence and Chambers Ireland.
On November 29th, the Green Friday campaign will ask people to input to the local economy, support jobs and help nurture the country’s creative community, manufacturers and service providers by buying Irish.
If you’re heading into town or shopping online, why not try to support the work and livelihoods of small independent shops, craftspeople and designer-makers from across the west of Ireland.
The Small Firms Association Director, Sven Spollen-Behrens, says that Christmas can add a major economic boost when shoppers back small businesses and help maintain jobs.
He said: “If each adult spent just €20 extra in small local businesses this Christmas, this would amount to an injection of over €73m for small firms and would have a huge, positive impact on local jobs and the vibrancy of town and village centres.”
The DNA of many small towns and villages in the west of Ireland has been affected by online retail which often switches the focus away from local shops and retailers. It’s time to give small producers a big chance and, in the process, help rebuild our towns and villages.
This year, why not make it your Christmas wish that all your gifts are locally sourced?