Love the Hands that Feed You. 6 Tips for a More Sustainable Valentine’s Day.

Emilio Cogliani

This Valentine’s Day, before planning your romantic dinner or buying roses and chocolate, think about how your choices will affect the hands that feed you.

According to the Retail Advertising and Marketing Association, the average consumer spends around US$116 on Valentine’s Day, and florists make about US$400 million in revenue. Approximately 48 percent of consumers spend money on candy, 34 percent spend money on flowers, and about 35 percent dine out.

Workers in these industries, including service workers and farm laborers, are among the lowest paid in the world. They face exposure to pesticides and sexual harassment in the workplace.

Valentine’s Day is the highest grossing day for the US$600 billion restaurant industry; yet the 4.3 million tipped workers in the United States only earn US$2.13 per hour. Unfortunately, this rate has remained the same for more than 23 years.

The choices we make as eaters can support…

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