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Sustainable Shopping Guide

Selecting organic or eco-friendly items can have far-reaching effects on both the environment and the health of your family. Here, Wendy Gordon, editorial director of the Natural Resources Defense Council's Smarter Living program, and Tensie Whelan, president of the Rainforest Alliance, explain how you can make your purchases count with goods and services that are contributing to the well-being of communities, benefiting your health, and fostering the long-term health of the planet.

Seal of Approval
While many businesses claim their products are eco-friendly, how do we as consumers know for sure? Look for items bearing reliable seals such as the Rainforest Alliance Certified seal, Rainforest Alliance Verified mark, or Forest Stewardship Council logo. These telltale symbols signify that goods and services are produced or conducted sustainably.

There's an App for That... Label
The barrage of labels applied to food, personal care products, and other goods can sometimes seem as complex as the periodic table. To distinguish reliable label claims from those that can't be counted on, try the NRDC's Label Lookup app for iPhone. This handy tool evaluates labels based on information from the EPA, USDA, the California South Coast Air Quality Management District, Consumers Union, and certifier websites on a rating system to let you know if the purchase is right for your lifestyle.

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