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How Meal Planning Can Help Save Our Planet

How Meal Planning Can Help Save Our Planet

Mondays. Some people love them, some people want to skip them altogether.

Out of all the things Mondays represent, our favourite has to do with dinnertime: Meatless Mondays!

There are so many good reasons to consider incorporating Meatless Mondays into your family’s meal rotation and we’ll dive into a couple here.



There is no point in sugarcoating the truth: 10 billion animals are tortured and killed every year, 97% being farm animals.

In order to meet demand, some factory or large-scale farms keep animals in spaces that are way too small, don’t provide bedding, and often feed them the remains of other animals *

Larger animals=more meat=more money so they’re fed a steady supply of hormones, causing unnatural growth.

Animals that cannot sustain the stress of their living conditions get converted into feed and to combat the aggression and health issues that arise from this lifestyle, the surviving animals also get pumped full of antibiotics and other drugs, all of which are passed on to the consumer.

While there are a multitude of other serious issues with institutionalized cruelty, we’ll spare you the gory details and leave it here- reducing the amount of animal proteins consumed can hugely impact this unethical industry and reduce the amount of toxins passed on to your family; when shopping choose organic to support farms that use kinder practices to raise and slaughter their livestock.

IMPORTANT: * this doesn’t mean that all farmers are like this. The truth is, farming is one of the main reasons that humans have lasted this long. Without agriculture, where would we be? Farmers work long hours, are often underpaid, and care deeply for their animals.

Farmers (especially family-owned farms) deserve our respect. They keep our economy going, our bellies full, and our grocery stores stocked. We are a privileged society here in North America, and we often forget what it would be like without farmers.

This being said, there are, unfortunately, some farms that have horrifying histories of animal abuse and torture, like this chicken farm in Chilliwack, BC. We need to stand up for defenseless animals and condemn these sadistic farmers and workers alike.


Another huge impact to consider is environmental.

While studies have shown that most consumers assume fossil fuels are the higher contributor, agribusiness is responsible for more greenhouse gas emissions than cars, planes, ships, and trains combined.

Although there is much effort being put into other areas of conservation, there is a huge gap in the livestock sector.

This reluctance is due to the controversy that could arise with governments seemingly telling people how and what to eat.

Disappointingly, developed countries are the highest consumers of livestock while ranking lowest as far as awareness of its environmental impact and willingness to change.

Two 2014 peer-reviewed studies (here and here) calculated that, without severe cuts in this trend, agricultural emissions will take up the entire world’s carbon budget by 2050, with livestock a major contributor. This would mean every other sector, including energy, industry and transport, would have to be zero carbon, which is described as “impossible”.

The Chatham House report concludes: “Dietary change is essential if global warming is not to exceed 2°C.”- United Nations University


Experts have spoken up time and time again about the health benefits of reducing the consumption of animal proteins, particularly red meat.

Add to that the devastating effects the industry has on the environment and the unethical treatment of animals and you have the perfect motivation for Meatless Mondays!

Even this minor change to our purchasing and eating habits can have a large impact collectively. 


We’ll be following up with a piece on vegan swaps soon to give you some ideas so if you have any tried and true favourites, let us know!

Drop a comment below and we’ll pick some to feature in our upcoming article and newsletter. Also let us know if you’re doing anything to help with either of these causes, we’d love to hear how you effect change as well!

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2018 Holiday Gift Guide Featuring Ethical & Sustainable Products

2018 Holiday Gift Guide Featuring Ethical & Sustainable Products


The holiday season is creeping up, and each year it feels as though it comes a little quicker.

As I’m sure you know, Cultura’s mission is to better the world in any way that we can. This is why we have chosen to work exclusively with ethical and visionary businesses.

We know that the holiday season can sometimes weigh heavy on our chests when we are pressured to buy gifts, waste food, or take part in other unsustainable and exploitive activities.

This year, we wanted to do something different, and we want to inspire you to be different, too.


This year, we’ve decided to shop ethically and sustainably whenever we can. We can’t promise that everything we do will be sustainable because we are only human, but we will do our best to spend our pennies with conscientious businesses and brands.

The thing is, we know that shopping ethically isn’t easy.

To help solve this problem, we sourced only the best gifts from a carefully-selected group of vendors that are sustainable, ethical or fair-trade. There are even exclusive coupons and promotions included in the gift guide just for the Cultura community!

We truly believe that we can all make a difference, especially if we act as one united front. This year, let’s all do our part to reduce waste and plastic and use our purchasing power to make this Christmas a little more special for people all around the world.

Download the guide below and hit the share buttons on the left to share it with your friends and family!

Download the guide below and hit the share buttons on the bottom of the screen share it with your friends and family!

3 Easy Ways To Improve Your Ethical Business

3 Easy Ways To Improve Your Ethical Business

3 Easy Ways to Improve Your Ethical Business


Let’s talk about some easy ways you can improve your ethical business practices.

As business owners, we are faced with so many choices on a day to day basis — from what suppliers we use to how we run and operate our businesses.

All of these choices can be incredibly overwhelming when piled on top of all the other tasks. If you have ever found yourself rushing through a business decision because you just don’t have the time, you aren’t alone.

The problem is, if you are an ethical business, the choices you make will fundamentally affect your brand in more way than one.

To help you solve this problem, we have found three easy ways that you run a more ethical and sustainable business that helps the world flourish around you.

Leave a comment and tell us what makes you an ethical business!

01: Stick to Your Values

As a business owner and human in general, you have values.

Your personal values closely reflect your business values most times, and so before you dive into your business you need to establish your values.

One of the best ways to run an ethical business is to not only establish values but stick to them under any circumstances in your business.

You will have ups and downs as a business owner, but it’s most important that you stick to your values no matter the situation or season you go through in your business.

If you don’t stick to these values, you run the risk of damaging your brand reputation and violating your customers’ trust. If your customers see you making decisions that don’t align with your values (and theirs), they will begin to question your integrity.

To avoid this, it’s best to determine your values early-on and stick to them.

02: Give Back to Your Community

Business owners have a ton of things on their plate to begin with so the idea of adding something else may seem a little heart-wrenching.

However, giving back to your community is something that needs to be at the top of your to-do list as an ethical business owner.

The community you give back to could be the immediate physical community that you live in, or it could also be your online community if you are running a business with an online presence.

Not only does this help you to grow your business, but it truly does leave a lasting impact on the community around you.

Tip: choose a cause that is close to your heart but also one that reflects your business and ideal customers. Make sure that the cause is also aligned perfectly with your company values.

03: Make Constructive Criticism Your BFF

Sometimes hearing feedback on your services and products can be a bit tough, and some business owners take it to heart.

But one of the most ethical things that you can do as a business owner is to ask for constructive criticism and implement changes regarding the criticism that you have received.

Sometimes we think we are doing what is best for our company and community, but we may only see things through one lens.

This means that we always have room for improvement, and if we are taking advice from our customers we can build an ethical business that actually cares about the customers.

By caring about the customers, their experience and what they think, you can run an ethical business that grows a great reputation for ethics and sustainability.

Remember that a great brand serves its customers’ deepest pain points — so make sure you actually listen to your customers and always improve.

There you have it!

These are the top three things that you can do to run an ethical business that is sustainable long-term, even though there are so many other things that you can do as well.

This is just a great starting point for a business that is ready to start being more ethical as it operates on a daily basis. If you have any other tips, we would love to hear them — drop them in a comment below.

Leave a comment and tell us what makes you an ethical business!

The New Facebook Community That Will Grow Your Ethical Business

The New Facebook Community That Will Grow Your Ethical Business

The Soulful and Ethical Entrepreneur Society

(The SEE Society)

Request to join The SEE Society here:

The Soulful and Ethical Entrepreneur Society is a new Facebook community that was created to help passionate entrepreneurs increase their profitability in their business and share their mission with the world.

How Joining the Group Will Help You Find Success

In the SEE Society, we will have networking activities and posts that encourage business owners to share their ideas, services and products with the other members of the group.

With the right marketing and brand positioning, your customers can be transformed into loyal fans. To find loyal fans, you need to find people with the same ethics that align with your business.

The SEE Society is the perfect opportunity to pitch yourself and connect with other people that care about the same things you do.

We will also have fun giveaways and prizes that include hand-selected, sustainable products and services from other members of the group. This is an excellent way to promote your business, make longlasting friendships and entrepreneurial connections that will supercharge your growth.

Business strategies will also be discussed so we can all post our achievements and share how we were able to accomplish them. The more successful people in the group are — the more likely everyone is to participate and become loyal customers.

Join the SEE Society to Grow Your Business

Soulful and passionate entrepreneurs should join the SEE Society if they are ready to engage and grow their business — but also become a loyal fan to other businesses.

A business doesn’t need a million fans to be successful — you only need your loyal following.

Your tribe is in this group. Your ideal customers are in this group. This is the place for you to share your ideas and grow your brand loyalty.

About The Host

My name is Erin Blondeau and I’m a brand strategist from Vancouver Island, BC.

I am a huge nerd — when I’m not working, you’ll probably find me listening to true crime podcasts while I grocery shop, rapping along with 2pac in my car or shopping at thrift stores.

At my core, I am an entrepreneur that has always been drawn to emotional topics surrounding social impact, culture and the planet. I’ve always felt a need to dive deep into the more challenging concepts in life — it’s my deepest desire to make a change, no matter how big or small.

I decided to launch Cultura Brand Studio with this desire in mind. I want to help amazing entrepreneurs get their mission out to the world and find success while doing so.

Prizes and Giveaways

There will be prizes and giveaways to engaged members of the SEE Society. The purpose of this is to give people in the group a chance to try products from other soulful, sustainable and ethical businesses inside the group.

We want to encourage growth, and what better way than to get your products in the hands of your dream customers?

Invite Your Friends

If this sounds like a group that you’d like to be a part of, make sure you invite your friends and other qualifying connections to the group.

Everyone MUST answer the questions to be approved. The group is exclusively for entrepreneurs that match the criteria we talked about above. The group is a close-knit community and therefore, we need to be selective in our process.

Please read the rules and answer the questions to be approved.

Rules of the Soulful + Ethical Entrepreneur Society

Everyone in The SEE Society must engage, so please only join if you are ready to engage and grow your business to its full potential.

☽ The rules are simple:
1. Don’t be a jerk.
2. If you’re going to self-promote, it better be beautiful!*
3. Show up and engage.

*self-promotion will be allowed on a trial basis. I will allow self-promotion as long as you are putting thought into it and doing it to serve the group. Explain to us WHY we can use your service or product — explain how it is going to make a difference for us.

Please don’t be spammy — just be real and authentic.

Do You Qualify to Join?

If you’ve read through the criteria and you think you’d be a good fit for the group, I’d love to have you there! All you have to do is request to join the FB community (make sure you answer the questions) and I’ll review your answers and your profile.

Once you’re in, we can all work on networking and growing our businesses!

See you in the group

How This Organic Skincare Company is Changing The World, One Bottle of Ethical Argan Oil At A Time

How This Organic Skincare Company is Changing The World, One Bottle of Ethical Argan Oil At A Time

How This Organic Skincare Company is Changing The World, One Bottle of Ethical Argan Oil At A Time

Joèl’s Unconventional Story

I’ve owned a beauty and wellness company for nearly eight years now, but few people would guess that my path toward ethical entrepreneurship actually started in a very frightening and unconventional way.

In fact, I don’t think many people out there can claim that their ethical business started because of a terrible condition affecting their eyelids, but I can! Curious? Let me explain…

I went from looking like my healthy, happy 30 year-old self to looking like a 70 year-old overnight – my eyelids were scaly, red and angry. I had no idea how I would heal my eyelids so they would return to their blessedly normal state.

For anyone out there who’s ever dealt with a skin condition like that – you know how terrifying it can be.

I was not pleased. I was even less pleased to discover that after trying about a dozen products, there was not ONE that helped my eyelids, other than a steroid cream from a doctor – a cream that could only be used for a maximum of 7 days.

I just knew there had to be something better.

And it turns out, I was right.

Who had the secret potion for me? My very own Moroccan mother-in-law. Once I tried her handmade Argan Oil, my scaly and red eyelids miraculously transformed back to their healthy, vibrant, and supple skin in just a few days. Obviously, now all of my friends wanted to get their hands on this ‘miracle oil from Morocco”, too.

That’s when I asked my mother-in-law how much of this stuff she could actually make. She simply answered: “I can make as much as you’d like.”

And we’ve been in business together ever since.

The Green Beauty Movement

This is actually a wonderful time to be in the beauty business. Yes, it’s competitive, but we have the opportunity to work with customers who appreciate what we do – and how we do it.

People like you and me have finally had enough.

We are tired of questionable ingredients.

We are tired of products made in unsustainable work environments. We are tired of nature having to pay the price for our self-care purchases.

The movement toward “green beauty” has been brewing for a while and we believe that this is absolutely something to celebrate. Not only do we now care more about what we put in our bodies with regard to food, but we really care about what we put on them as well.

While this whole approach to beauty and wellness is totally trending now, this was certainly not a thing when I was growing up in the 1970s and 80s. We pretty much ate what we pleased and we just picked up whatever personal care products looked and smelled good in the stores.

But meanwhile, data piled up on common, but harmful body care ingredients (think in soaps, lotions and other daily essentials). These problem ingredients are not good for our bodies, they’re not good for the environment, and they’re certainly not good for the humble hands that help make them.

Which sneaky ingredients am I talking about?

I’m talking about possibly carcinogenic parabens, and endocrine-disrupting phthalates, and polluting microbeads. Then there’s the unethical working conditions.  To top it all off, you have the horror of animal testing. I’m not trying to make you depressed – it’s time we wake up and hear the truth behind the beauty industry.

And I have great news: we are not powerless.

How We Can Change the World

It might seem overwhelming and complicated to overhaul your beauty routine to make it green and ethical, but believe me – you can make it easy with the right approach. Here it is: change the world and reveal your healthiest self in the process by swapping your usual conventional picks for their greener, more sustainable alternatives. This has never been easier, or more luscious, than now.

Natural, green, ethical, eco-friendly, and cruelty-free: you no longer have to sacrifice quality and efficacy for beauty picks that are good for you AND the planet.

The thing is, there is no good reason to use harmful chemicals in beauty products in this day and age. Sure, they can be effective to a degree and they certainly are cheap. But there are so many nourishing, highly stable, and totally luxurious ingredients out there to use on our skin, hair and nails that don’t contain anything questionable. Sometimes they may cost a little more, but most, if not all, of us would agree – they are worth it.

Saadia Organics

I run my company, Saadia Organics, from Vancouver but our star ingredient – Argan Oil – is made in Morocco. My mother-in-law, Saadia, is our proud production manager. At Saadia Organics, we choose to do things differently.

Our Values

  • We are socially-conscious and fair-trade. We hire single mothers to hand-press our oil for us in Morocco, ensure that their workplace is private and nurturing, and that their hourly wage is fair and acceptable – by Canadian standards. While many companies of our size will take advantage of lower wages and conversion rates, often paying an equivalent of only $5-10 a day, we at Saadia Organics are proud to provide wages that sit far above the North African average.
  • Our products are eco-friendly. Our Argan Oil is made from the fruit from the Argania spinosa tree that grows in southwest Morocco. We would not be able to sleep soundly at night knowing that our products are harming the Earth, so we strictly prohibit unsustainable harvesting practices: instead, we simply wait for the fruit to fall from the tree. Once it has fallen, we simply gather it from the ground. We also are planting and growing our own trees on the farm that Saadia inherited several years ago.
  • We use only eco-friendly packaging. We do our best to trim away excess, useless packaging and avoid plastic as much as possible. It’s all about sending out things that are reusable and recyclable. There is enough packaging in the world and we refuse to contribute to a growing problem.
  • We are cruelty-free. We are huge animal lovers and would never consider animal testing. Cruelty-free standards can vary from country to country – we hold ourselves to the highest standard and strictly prohibit animal testing of any kind. Instead, we happily test Saadia Organics products on willing friends and family!

How to buy socially-conscious, healthy, and eco-friendly skincare

If you’re ready to do the green beauty swap and buy quality products that do no harm, some research and reading is a must on your journey to a healthier earth – and a healthier you.

Check out the “About Us” page on your new green beauty company finds. Do a quick Google search and read up on their practices.

Ethical businesses are proud of their sustainable and green initiatives. Like us at Saadia Organics, entrepreneurs, doers, and dreamers the world over are creating the new beauty and wellness industry you want and deserve. Let’s work together to change the world, one beauty swap at a time.


Comment and tell us what your favourite beauty brands are.


Joèl Adrienne • Guest Blogger • Saadia Organics

Joèl (pronounced “Joelle”) has been the owner of Saadia Organics Inc. since it was founded in 2011. When she’s not focusing on her beauty and wellness company, she’s hanging out with her husband and two daughters. And she is always amidst planning their next vacation adventure.


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