I regard myself as a progressive eater. Like other aspects of my life, I am looking for win-wins … foods that bring me quality, purity and high green and animal welfare standards. I am not perfect, but I am constantly trying to be more and more so.
MarxFoods.com is kind of the same, but there is an added requirement: profitability. It is part of the inherent conflict in business between sound social/enviro choices and choices that lead to maximum profits.
We don’t trumpet our eco or humane credentials very often because corporate green-washing is a pet peeve of mine and we have a handful of achilles heels on that front. But, if you look at our product offerings, there is a sustainable/humane thread running through many of our product categories.
A customer asked us today to source tiger prawns for them and we had to politely decline. There are few special requests that we decline. What we have decided is that we aren’t going to tell people how to eat, but we also aren’t going sell the foods that I avoid at all costs. Farmed salmon tops that list, along with tiger prawns, milk-fed veal, foie gras and wild turtle meat.
Foie gras is a particularly tricky one for me, because our sister companies sell it to distributors and restaurants. Certainly, if we offered it through the web, we could make a lot of money. My partners like to remind me of this.
I am constantly conflicted about whether to wield my own biases and judgments when it comes to not selling something. Any thoughts on this? Should we just sell everything that foodies might want? Should we add more items to the prohibited list and if so, which items?