Letters to the Editor

Letter: Pink-washing

I pulled into a local gas station recently and was stopped in my tracks by a poster advertising that every bottle of water sold here would “support local breast cancer charities.” As a survivor, I’m always grateful for any awareness attention and the sentiment by the station owner.

However, I feel compelled to point out three important things.

1. We should be eliminating plastic bottles, which are created by fossil fuel extraction. It takes decades for a plastic bottle to break down and our oceans and landfills are in trouble. Plastic contributes to ocean pollution and breaks down into microplastic particles.

2. Plastic production involves endocrine-disrupting chemicals, which then lead to cancer — breast cancer and other hormone-based cancers in particular.

3. This “deal” is effectively “pink-washing,” using the pink ribbon as bait to increase sales. The price for the water is higher than the cost, and there is no explanation as to how much will go to the charities and how much will be deemed as cause-related marketing expense and profit.

So please understand this is not a personal criticism. I’m just asking that we all connect the dots any time we purchase anything that has been “pink-washed.”

— Mary Katzke


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