Black Friday 2020: once too much ?

For a few years now, France has decided to keep up with American time in November by integrating the famous Black Friday : a day during which traders offer completely insane reductions of up to -90% on their products. The goal ? Selling more and more and emptying stocks of certain products which, in normal times, are largely ignored by consumers.
This very often gives rise to real rat race in stores where some are sometimes ready to queue for hours just to be the first to take advantage.
So at a time when many traders have had to close their doors due to confinement and where the French have never been so concerned by climate change, a question arises, does Black Friday still have it? reasons to exist?

A (too) significant environmental impact

In the digital age where e-commerce is king, even more so in these troubled times, Black Friday is now played mostly online. Popularized by the giant Amazon, the other French players very quickly followed the same direction, C-Discount and Fnac in the lead. 

All of this leads to a peak in orders every year and therefore a boom in the number of packages to be delivered, and therefore a drastic increase in CO2 emissions from the trucks and vans responsible for making home deliveries.

When we know that 40% of CO2 emissions from road traffic come directly from these two types of vehicles, we immediately understand that this is not necessarily the best idea.
But there is still a second “kiss cool” effect directly induced by Black Friday : buyers often find themselves in a state of “stress” when faced with promotions, which greatly diminishes the classic reasoning of “what I have. really need ? "And above all the fear of" missing out on the bargain "with traders who often wave the famous weak stocks under their noses, thus pushing them to buy as quickly as possible.

In the end, once their packages have been received, a significant proportion of buyers regret their decisions or even return their packages, thus doubling the environmental impact of the latter, sometimes even leading to the destruction of the items by the seller when they are not available. more recoverable.

A day reserved for "big" players

As we saw at the beginning of this article, Black Friday was originally a day allowing department stores to come and free their stocks of unsold products in order to make room for… Christmas products!

If today this reason could still be valid, it is in reality minimal, e-merchants often benefiting from huge storage places far from city centers and therefore much less expensive, which in the end turns out to be to their advantage. for Black Friday

Indeed, in order to be able to legitimize the important promotions that are granted as well as the delivery costs often offered on this day, these actors bet on the fact that in the end buyers are ready to spend a lot of a sudden by buying like us. 've seen products that they don't necessarily need.

We therefore understand the importance of having large stocks in order to be able to respond to a demand which, if it was previously centered on a single day, now most often from Friday to the following Monday, which has been renamed "Cyber ​​Monday" , showing once again the appropriation by e-commerce.

It is therefore the smaller traders who find themselves at a great disadvantage, and in particular the shops in town centers which by nature often do not have large stocks and are unable to compete with the promotions of the giants without risking going out of business. .

Make Friday Green Again , the eco-responsible answer:

It was in 2017 that we saw the emergence of an anti Black Friday movement . Called Green Friday , the association has decided to stand up against the over-consumption induced by Black Friday and above all to educate consumers about more responsible consumption as well as the environmental and social impacts that their purchases can have.

Joined by more and more brands and merchants each year who find themselves in the values ​​of the movement, Green Friday highlights more sustainable initiatives that can be chosen by brands during this famous day and thus transform a commercial day. into a more social and positive event.

Among the various actions that have already been taken, we find for many the decision not to apply reductions during this day. But some go even further and have decided to shut down their website altogether on Black Friday to show their commitment.

Another choice, which may be an excellent alternative, is to directly donate a percentage of the price of products sold to one or more associations. So, buying a product on this day can have a positive effect on our society.

In 2020, what is it?

This year things are even more complicated for small businesses. With the health situation, many of them have had to close their doors since the end of October, and are suffering more than ever from competition from e-commerce sites.

As we have seen, there is no lack of possibilities to do things differently, and this day would be even more meaningful if it had a positive impact on our society.

If you are a company, this day is an opportunity to share your values ​​and your environmental commitment by joining the Green Friday movement in particular and by making fair and sustainable decisions.

If you are a simple consumer, you have just as great decision-making power, by choosing to avoid purchases on the main platforms, you send a clear message on the need to change practices that are no longer sustainable over time.

In any case we hope you enjoyed reading this article, you will find all the sources just below and if you have any questions join us on social networks!

Sources of the article:

Green'chat for all on the event of European Sustainable Development Week

For the European Sustainable Development Week, chat with an eco-responsibility advisor for free and get all the answers to transform your business from the inside. 

For those who don't feel like reading it all: 

For 10 days from September 18 to 28, ask all the questions you want to transform your business from the inside 

Our GreenScale advisors will answer you on our online chat on all subjects relating to the CSR of your company.

Sign up for our newsletter or log in from September 18 on our chat.

In a few days, the 5th European Sustainable Development Week will open. It has a particular flavor this year due to our health context and also since it was postponed for several months and extended over 3 weeks to facilitate events. 

What is the European Sustainable Development Week?

SEDD for those who do not know, was created following the adoption in 2015 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Its objective is to make the greatest number of people aware of social and environmental concerns throughout Europe.

These 17 Sustainable Development Goals were defined as part of a program, the 2030 program. The United Nations General Assembly has planned for the year 2030 these 17 goals broken down into 169 targets in the areas of the economy, social development and environmental protection. 

This year, it's been 5 years, 1/3 of the time allotted to achieve these objectives. And what happened? Has the world moved for 5 years?

I want to believe that yes, I want to be optimistic on a daily basis, but optimism is not enough if it is not accompanied by concrete actions. These goals are not in vain, to be able to reach them, each of us must act! I don't want to talk about environmental consequences, the loss of biodiversity, wars, poverty in the world. Others act on awareness with great talent, each one his mission. I prefer to talk to you about CONCRETE ACTIONS, and more particularly at work, in your company.

Sustainable Development comes to business through CSR

Within the framework of the company, we speak of Corporate Social Responsibility, this describes the way in which a company will take its responsibilities towards society in the same way as the State and the citizens. Behind CSR, many still imagine actions such as replacing plastic cups with coffee machine mugs. However, it includes many more actions both internally (employees, purchasing, etc.) and towards its external ecosystem (products, customers, partners, etc.), both in favor of the preservation of the environment but also ethics and reduction of social inequalities. 

More and more, we see appearing on the organizational charts of CSR functions and departments, mainly in large companies. At GreenScale, we believe that CSR is not the preserve of one person or management in a company. 

What if you were told that one person in a family is responsible for all actions, would you find that logical? Why place such a responsibility on one person when each member of the family makes daily decisions?

Large companies are not the only ones who can act 

3 million companies in France thrive with less than 10 employees, the vast majority of our economic fabric! VSEs and SMEs alone produce 1/3 of the total turnover of French companies and employ nearly half of the payroll.

Do not underestimate the impact that each of them can have on the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals! It's the sum of everyone's efforts that create the wave of change we want. The means of acting are very diverse, observe your daily life, the actions that you or your colleagues do, the decisions that are made, the products that you help design, the services provided and what you use to achieve them, the purchases carried out for the life of the company or for your customers, the way in which employees are hired or selected suppliers or partners, how it goes after hiring / selection, the communications you carry out, ... all this can be impacted by CSR and may have an impact on the environment and society.

There is roughly a one in two chance that you will work in a very small business or an SME, and therefore that you are interested in what will follow!

Our mission: to support companies of all sizes in their eco-responsibility

GreenScale was created to bridge the gap between CSR consulting agencies, practicing inaccessible prices and long and complex procedures, and entrepreneurs, VSE / SME managers and employees wishing to do their part, have an environmental and societal impact. at their level, through concrete actions adapted and included in their daily business.

Every day when we speak with our customers, it is for:

We still meet too many entrepreneurs and employees who tell us: I do not know how to act or I lack knowledge and I do not have time to train myself on such and such a subject.

10 days of unlimited chat with our GreenScale advisors

That's why from September 18 to 28, our GreenScale advisors will answer all your questions in our online chat! 

The boost you've been waiting for is here!

It is for free that you will have access for 10 days to part of our “Online Advisor” service: the chat 

NB: depending on the number of people online and the difficulty of your question (and the time of day…), you may not receive a live response but we will answer ALL your questions!

What questions can you ask us? 

Well… just about anything that has a direct or indirect impact on the environmental and societal impact of your business. 

It's very vast, so to trigger your creativity here are some ideas for questions to ask us: 

- How can I know our environmental / societal impact?

- Which label is best suited to our product and our company size?

- How can I communicate our eco-responsible actions without doing greenwashing?

- Which supplier is the most eco-responsible between X and Y? 

- What actions can I put in place when recruiting for gender equality / diversity / against various discrimination?

- What impact indicators should I monitor in the IT department? 

- How can I motivate my colleagues on such eco-responsible action?


Obviously, tell us about your company, your approach, the information you have; the more precise you are, the more our advice is! 

Far from providing you with “boat” advice on sustainable development in business, we want to push you to action, unlock situations, provide you with the key you are lacking, allow you to step into high gear ...

Imagine if you are hundreds of companies contacting us with the impact we can all have together.

We hope you take this opportunity to take action in your business and look forward to talking to you!

To receive a reminder when the green'chat opens: subscribe to our newsletter now

GreenScale joins the TECH FOR GOOD collective

This collective, originally called FEST (France Éco Sociale Tech), was born in 2018 with the desire to bring together all those who use technological innovation to resolve environmental and societal issues.

Being able to be part of the Tech For Good collective comes down to questioning and acting in our organization on their 4 main principles :

For GreenScale, joining this collective was important since it allowed us to assert our double identity : DIGITAL and IMPACT. It is a superb opportunity to come together with other committed entrepreneurs to bring together concrete proposals to decision-makers and economic and financial players.

A collective of entrepreneurs is also a place of sharing and mutual aid . We have already been able to participate in several online gatherings, and the energy that drives us is perfect to always push our desire for positive impact even further!

And just to go even further, if your company is part of the collective, do not hesitate to send us a message; we have decided to offer a specific price for all our services to members of the TECH FOR GOOD movement .

Océane PUECH, GreenScale co-founder

Plastic packaging: the miracle solution has finally been found

For many years now, it has been impossible to navigate on a news site without ending up stumbling upon an article denouncing the abuse of plastic and the waste that results from its use. 

A real plague of the 21st century, plastic is responsible for the death of nearly 1.5 million animals each year, most of them marine. How could it be otherwise with world production estimated today at nearly 10 tonnes per second (yes we are talking about seconds, not weeks).

Plastic is an integral part of our consumer society and is found everywhere, starting with the 89 billion bottles that are produced each year. A real floating continent of plastic waste with an area equivalent to 3 times the area of ​​France has even formed between Japan and the United States.

Faced with all this we had to react, and quickly. It was decided, we were going to recycle the plastic, so no more worries! Problem, today in France, less than 20% of the plastics we use are recycled. But in reality we should rather speak of "recycling" indeed, the vast majority of recycled plastics lose quality as they are recycled and end up having to be incinerated or even landfilled. 

Well, never mind, if the plastic cannot be recycled, let's create plant-based plastics! Called “biobased” plastics and often reduced to “organic plastics” (in marketing, things go better right away, right?) This whole family ultimately looks very much like its petrochemical cousins. A vegetable plastic bottle belonging to the PET segmentation will be recyclable or rather recyclable like a classic PET bottle. But for all that it will not be biodegradable as they are trying to sell it to us, well, technically if, but then in a few hundred years or in a dedicated factory.

Another failure, and a very new attempt! This time we invent the plastic called "Ok Home Compost" which, as its name suggests, can be composted directly at home. It is this type of plastic that we find today in the fruit and vegetable departments, with a silky coating. So, is it okay, do we have our "green" plastic?

Unfortunately no ... because, however compostable it may be, this plastic is actually made up of 2/3 petroleum materials, the rest being corn starch which gives it its compostable properties.

So I imagine you are wondering what is this quick fix? No worries, I will now reveal to you the fantastic discovery that has been made by researchers. 

Indeed, the latter then in search of a solution to plastic found themselves reading old stories dating from the 19th century, and after comparing their notes they fell backwards! 

In all these stories, there was never any question of any environmental or health problem related to plastic! The oceans seemed to be in excellent health, the fields were not littered with bags blowing away with the rhythm of the gusts. Plastic was simply nonexistent! And that's normal because it hadn't been invented yet.

So yes, as obvious as it sounds, the best way to eliminate the plastic problem is to just not use it. I know, it's simple to say and it seems utopian in every way. But let's just ask a simple question, if tomorrow, suddenly and without warning it became impossible, forbidden, to use any plastic, how would you do in your business? Would you give up and go out of business, or would you redouble your inventiveness to find a solution to all this?

In any case, we are here to support you every day in your transition, and believe me, the faster you implement it, the easier it will be. Do not undergo the change, be an actor.

[Series: Why take an eco-responsible approach?] 2/5 - Your STAKEHOLDERS

Preserve the environment, reduce social inequalities… so be it! These are very noble objectives, but what is their place in a company ? 

Are you a leader and you hesitate to devote the time and money? 

Are you an employee and looking for arguments to give to your managers?

In this series of articles, we pragmatically expose the benefits for your organization apart from the positive environmental and societal impact generated !

Benefit 2: Consolidate your relationships with your stakeholders

Engaging in a corporate social responsibility approach also means taking an interest in the ecosystem of your company, that is to say its stakeholders.

The parts involved , what then? 

These are all the people or groups of people with whom you have mutual interests . They can be your customers, suppliers, distributors but also associations (consumers for example or NGOs).

What interests can you have in your concern for all of these people?

For customers, we saw in the first article on business differentiation : they are the ones who choose whether or not to buy your products and services. But the others?

In the value chain of your products

Take the example of your suppliers, processors or distributors. You or your colleagues are constantly working with them, they are part of your product's value chain so they potentially have an influence on the time, cost and / or quality of the end product. Acting as a partner to develop your product in a more eco-responsible way will ensure both real consistency in your commitment and a saving of time for your future negotiations. 

In carrying out your services

If you are selling services, you are not exempt from stakeholders. Ask yourself what do you need for the realization of these services. You will surely find suppliers who are useful to you on a daily basis. In this case, it is more your internal eco-responsibility.

Listing all your fixed and variable costs is a good way to identify all of your suppliers.

On the side of civil society

On the other hand, we have what is commonly called civil society with all consumers (customers or not), associations and NGOs.

Did you know that the confidence rate in the information given by companies is 46%? When the information comes from an NGO, 56% of people think that this information is true. 

The creation of partnerships with one or more well-selected NGOs will allow you to benefit from its sympathy and legitimacy but also from their often specialized expertise in specialized fields. 

On the side of public organizations

Finally, let's not forget the public organizations: State, European Commission and local authorities lay down the framework and the rules but are also there to provide their help and support your approach whether it is financially, by methodological support or by the development of your initiative and its accreditation in the eyes of the public.

You certainly share common interests at the territorial level for example, more and more initiatives bring together public organizations and companies.

A tool to bring them all together

Creating a materiality matrix with your stakeholders is the best way to identify the issues facing your stakeholders and prioritize them.

By developing win-win actions for each stakeholder, by ensuring that none feel aggrieved, it is also laying the foundations for trust and a reciprocal commitment over time.

Your ecosystem is an asset in your eco-responsibility approach, collaboration is the key to moving forward on this path.

Océane PUECH, GreenScale co-founder

Entrepreneurship in 2020

At Greenscale, entrepreneurship is at the heart of our approach. Every day we are committed to finding the best solutions to support each company that we meet to improve on the path of eco-responsibility.

And among the latter we also work with many entrepreneurs from all sides. It is therefore a theme that is dear to us, but what about the entrepreneur in this year 2020? And especially in this very difficult period, is it still possible to undertake, or is the approach pure madness?

Come on, let's clear up the false mystery now, in 2020 entrepreneurs have more than ever an important role to play!

Because if COVID 19 will have done a lot of damage among populations, it will also have been able to destroy a large part of the world economy, shutting down factories, businesses, and even institutions country after country. If we have one conclusion to draw from this crisis, it is that we were very far from being ready.

I want here especially to speak about our companies which for a large part found themselves completely disorganized overnight, undermined by a wave which exceeded the most pessimistic forecasts. 

This is where entrepreneurs need to come in, the rules have been changed, it's time to find new solutions.

Today we need daring and inventiveness in order to create the society of tomorrow, a society which will be more responsible, fairer, but above all which will not make the same mistakes as in the past.

The entrepreneur of 2020 will also and above all be eco-responsible, he will seek to find concrete solutions to real problems (honestly, do we need a plastic bottle connected via Bluetooth to our phone to know if we Did you drink 1l of water this morning?) while respecting our environment and preserving the members of our society as well as possible. 

And more than anything, the entrepreneur of 2020 will be everywhere, it will be you, it will be me, it will be an employee, it will be a leader, it will be an elected official, it will be a teacher…
The entrepreneur of 2020 will be everyone who has the desire to do better, the desire to advance our society. And something tells me that we are likely to be more and more. You will have seen it as much as I have, in these troubled times, it is by acting together that we are able to meet the most important challenges. So, are you in?

Jean-Baptiste Liouville, co-founder Greenscale

[Series: Why take an eco-responsible approach?] 1/5 - Your CLIENTS

Preserve the environment, reduce social inequalities… so be it! These are very noble objectives, but what is their place in a company ? 

Are you a leader and you hesitate to devote the time and money? 

Are you an employee and looking for arguments to give to your managers?

In this series of articles, we pragmatically expose the benefits for your organization apart from the positive environmental and societal impact generated !

Benefit 1: Differentiate yourself from your competitors or open up to a new market

Differentiate from its competitors, find new customers or retain existing ones, these are perpetual quests for all companies. The key word is the customer . 

The objective is to understand what he is buying, what he has bought and especially what he plans to buy again to be sure to find his products / services at home.

However, your customer is not just about buying behavior for goods or services. He is a citizen who carries values. According to a study carried out by Ethnicity in May 2016, 75% of people say that "sustainable development is a necessity  ". 

On the B2C side

When you speak in B2C, you have surely heard about responsible consumption. What is it about ? 

For 50.5% of French people, consuming responsibly is above all consuming differently: consuming less but better replaces the logic of less expensive at all costs.

But what exactly are these new consumers waiting for?

Well we are going to make a little differentiation in this group between alternative and reasoned consumers.

Even if the delimitation is not straightforward, the former are in a strong break with conventional production and distribution methods. Particularly committed, they rely heavily on collective organizations and buy from cooperative distribution channels, in short circuits from small brands directly. 

The latter favor a renewed approach to consumption, mindful of social, environmental or local development considerations, but without a major break with their usual lifestyles. They are looking for products and services carrying credible and relevant signals such as labels (AB, Max Havelaar, BCorp, etc.) 

In both cases, they have a better understanding of the issues associated with the production of products and their environmental and social impacts. It is important to learn the codes of this new transparent communication and without greenwashing, we will do an article soon on the subject.

As you can see, the demand is already there and continues to grow. For example, organic products are the precursors of this movement, they have been growing steadily since 2015 when they jumped by + 15% in one year.

In 2016, 65% of consumers already said they were ready to pay more for a product with a positive impact on the environment or society. 

On the B2B side

Are you addressing companies and organizations? And yet, these are the people you have in front of you. Some of them are themselves committed and are part of these alternative or reasoned consumers, they will be sensitive to an eco-responsibility approach led by their supplier. Even if it does not particularly concern the product / service purchased - which is the case for intellectual services - the care taken in an internal CSR approach applied to all your support functions will be equally appreciated.

As for your customers who themselves sell to the general public, they are driven by the market, you can transfer our article to them!

So what are you waiting for?

GreenScale becomes a member of 1% for the Planet

It was at the beginning of last March, a time that seems so distant today with the COVID 19 crisis which has come to shake up our entire society, we announced that we were proud to officially join the 1% for the Planet movement. .
And today even more than at the time of this choice, it seems important to us to explain our reasons to you.

Created in 2002 by Yvon Chouinard, the founder of the Patagonia brand, and by Craig Mathews, former owner of Blue Ribbon Files, 1% for the Planet is an international philanthropic movement that directly connects approved associations and companies of all sizes . 

The operation is the simplest in the world, each member undertakes to donate each year to one or more associations of his choice 1% of his turnover. If you can donate everything in cash, you can also help associations with donations of products or services, depending on your choice. And of course you can decide to give more than 1%.

As for associations, there are 6 major causes which are defended by the movement: climate, food, natural spaces, pollution, water, and finally wildlife. You can directly consult the list of all member associations of 1% for the Planet and choose the one that will match your company's values. You can even involve your employees by asking them to vote for the associations they want to defend.

As you will have understood, this process is therefore anything but complicated, with the addition of a responsive French team and listening to you, you are sure to make the right choice, and we cannot encourage you too much to join this beautiful family. Because after all, imagine what it would be possible to accomplish if each company contributed 1% to protect the environment?

Joining the movement was the first step for us, the second step is to talk about it around us and we will support each company with which we work to do the same.
And to go even further if your company is part of the network or if you have the project, do not hesitate to send us a message; we have decided to offer a specific rate for all our services to members of the 1% movement. for the Planet .

See you soon for another post, take care of yourself!

Jean-Baptiste Liouville, co-founder Greenscale

Let's get out of this crisis from the top

As I write these words France is in its fifth week of confinement, and if we now have a first release date, one thing is certain: everything will not be as before and it may not be. not such a bad thing, let me explain.

While there is obviously no question of blaming the appearance of the COVID 19 virus on our system of life or consumption, in terms of its proliferation, it is globalization that has allowed COVID 19 to spreading at a speed never seen before.

In fact today we are used to everything going very quickly, and it is more and more common now to order things on the internet from the other side of the world which will arrive in barely one or two weeks. We are constantly traveling faster and further, we have lowered the barriers between countries (and this is a great thing here, I wouldn't say the opposite). But in an economy where things go so fast, it's no wonder a virus travels as fast as the latest smartphone.

If this period of confinement will have undermined and will continue to do so in the months to come many companies and citizens around the world, it will also have had the good surprise to give us a glimpse of what a planet with less people could be. polluting activities, with fewer plane trips around the world, fewer vehicles on the roads, and all the emissions that come with it. 

This crisis gives us a glimmer of hope, that nothing is actually lost and that if each and every one of us gives the means, a less bleak future is largely within our reach.

These difficult weeks will also have had the merit of showing the whole world to what extent our economy, our well-being, our comfort and above all our health depend on key people who are generally forgotten, put aside and above all taken for granted.

I am speaking here of course of all the nursing staff who, despite more than difficult conditions, show themselves every day, every hour and every minute to the height of the challenge to be met, to all those who have continued to work so that we can feed, go shopping and keep a semblance of normal life, to those who ensure our safety despite the risks, police, firefighters, gendarmes, and finally to all those who have contributed to ensuring that our country can get through this crisis as well as possible. If applause in the evening is a start, we will have to go much further tomorrow to express our gratitude to them and fight alongside them so that all are valued as they deserve.

It is clear that we were not prepared for this period, it is clear that mistakes were made in the past, it is clear that many of our choices, no matter how trivial they seemed, had a negative impact on the situation . But above all it is much clearer that it is now our responsibility to no longer make the same mistakes and to be able together to design a better society for tomorrow. Good luck to all.

Jean-Baptiste Liouville, co-founder Greenscale