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  • Writer's pictureThoughtsandThings

10 Small Companies To Cover Your Essential Needs That Don't Break The Bank

It’s no secret that small businesses have been hit especially hard due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s also no secret that the word essential has never been more present in our vocabulary than it has in the past five months. Although we all have different financial situations, most of us have cut back on “non-essential” buys but that does not mean that we need to stop supporting small businesses. This week is a quick read, aimed at covering all of your “essential needs” while helping keep our small business heroes alive at the same time!

Essential Need #1: Eat (the healthy stuff)

Before COVID-19 struck Chile, I used to love my weekly trips to La Vega. Large crowds aren’t very COVID-19 friendly so like many others, I’ve found another way to get local, fresh produce. I’m currently loving MB Green! They have fair prices, are professional, responsive, and even have an option to anonymously donate a basket of supplies to someone in need. As for dried health goods such as beans, quinoa, nuts, and dried fruit I really like Mercado Silvestre. I actually found Mercado Silvestre through a google search for red lentils. Yes, you read that right. I google-searched red lentils and compared prices...I’m serious about a deal! So I can tell you that Mercado Silvestre also has fair prices and a wide array of “health products” ranging from natural peanut butter to dried beans.

Essential Need #2: Eat (a sweet/salty treat)

Okay so this might be controversial to some, but if your personal budget allows it - there is nothing like a day off from cooking with a sweet or salty treat. I’ve got to be honest that I have way more of a salt tooth than a sweet tooth, but my coworkers swear by the sweet treats from Jen's Market!! Something really cool about Jen's Market is that her skills in the kitchen vary from drool-worthy desserts to the famous Argentine Milanesa. We can't go out to eat right now, but with a Milanesa from Jen's Market, we can pretend we're at an Argentine "Picada" instead! Continuing with the Argentine theme, another recommendation from my lovely colleagues is Pizzeria Argentina. Again, this "essential need" really only applies if it's realistic with your budget right now. With that said, if you can afford to support small restaurants like Pizzeria Argentina, it helps them during a tough time for small restaurants and helps you take a night off cooking. This is a definite win-win my friends!

Essential Need #3: Clean (your home)

Two small companies that you can trust to keep your home clean and free of harmful toxins & chemicals are Freemet & Late! I recently changed to Freemets laundry detergent and am loving the scent and it’s cleaning ability! They specialize in cleaning products for your home that do not harm the environment in the process. Late! is another game-changer with trusty products for your home. Something standing ovation applause-worthy is that they dedicate 100% of their profits. Who would've thought that purchasing cleaning supplies could be an act of charity?!

Essential Need #4: Clean (yourself)

Showering is a common occurrence for most of us, so I couldn't forget shower supplies from the list! July isn't over yet so it's not too late to participate in the Plastic Free July Challenge by replacing your normal shampoo for a bar shampoo/conditioner from Breaking Green or Le Vert. As for your body wash Moga, & Be Simple have some great alternatives. Not into Bar soap? Freemet also has a body wash option with natural microbeads. Extra tip, did you know that many microbeads in exfoliating body washes are actually just plastic and end up in our oceans? I didn't know either until I saw it mentioned on Freemet's website. All of these purchases are simple and not too expensive but make a big impact on reducing our plastic consumption.

Concluding Thoughts

Richard Branson once said that "Business is the force of change. Business is essential to solving the climate crisis because this is what business is best at: innovating, changing, addressing risks, searching for opportunities. There is no more vital task." It's no coincidence that a lot of the small businesses mentioned are taking a page out of Richard's book and tackling larger environmental issues such as eliminating our consumption of plastic and harmful chemicals & toxins all while creating a great product. I agree with Richard that business can be an extremely powerful source of change. But that takes some teamwork that involves us as consumers to support businesses that are making necessary changes, whenever possible. What do you think? I want to hear from you about what you think about business, especially small businesses as an agent for change. If you're feeling the love, leave a comment below with a shout out to your favorite small biz!

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