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29 May 2022

Big Kildare Interview: Conscious consumerism from a down-to-earth businesswoman

Big Kildare Interview: Conscious consumerism from a down-to-earth businesswoman

Pic: Lorna Anne Tierney of The Earthy Marketplace

Nowadays, it seems like young people are growing up even faster than before, and are becoming more and more environmentally conscious.

Kill village native Lorna Anne Tierney is such an example — according to her, she went from a "regular fast fashion shopping teen" to setting up The Earthy Marketplace (TEM).

Initially launched on November 16 last year, Lorna Anne said that TEM is a "first-of-its-kind" venture: "It is an all-Ireland resource hub for conscious consumerism: its launch was supported and shared by many prominent conscious influencers such as The Useless Project, Climate Love Ireland, Veghuns and Veganlife.ie."

As for some of the local businesses it works with, Lorna Anne said that TEM closely collaborates with Neon Beings for vintage clothing, along with the zero-waste stores Refillz and Unpacked.

She has been proactive for the environment in many ways over the past several years, and set up a page on Instagram called Earthy Cailíní with a friend at the beginning of January 2020.

Lorna Anne Tierney

"I have always been keen to highlight and promote small sustainable and ethical businesses on Earthy Cailíní but even more so since the beginning of the pandemic," Lorna Anne explained.

Speaking on what made her more environmentally conscious, Lorna Anne said that she became interested in environmentalism after watching the documentary Cowspiracy: "Now, all these years later I can say it goes beyond a passion, it’s a duty.

"People like me have everything we need and more: the life we live now would have been unimaginable just one or two generations ago.

"We are told we can have everything and be anything we want in life and more; we are the generation of more, but we need to be the generation of less: far less," she added.

Lorna Anne is also a proud vegan: discussing her lifestyle, she said: "At its core veganism is about kindness and compassion, not only towards animals but humans as well."

She added that she thinks stigmatisation "only helps to perpetuate a negative narrative" about vegans, who she says are "a diverse group of people with a general drive to try to make this world a better place and I think that is something to be wary of."

"For me personally, I believe you can only meet a person where they are: I believe in education and that knowledge is power and when someone is given both sides of a story, we can then make a conscious decision based on how we feel about the situation."

Lorna Anne also confirmed that there are already plans in place to expand TEM.

She elaborated: "We have just recently announced our plans to expand our community to include conscious/environmental NGOs, charities and non-profit organisations across Ireland."

Lastly, Lorna Anne said she wanted to draw attention to an initiative known as the Tree Tally: "At TEM, we believe in giving back to nature directly; we also believe that to begin to tackle the biodiversity crisis and climate change, we need to start thinking differently and collectively: which is why every month, with the help of our friends over at tree-planting initiative Reforest Nation, we have decided to ensure that a percentage of our service fee goes towards planting native Irish trees every month.

"This will contribute not only towards offsetting the carbon footprint of TEM's community, but it will also aid biodiversity and help to reforest and re-wild Ireland," Lorna Anne concluded.

Further information about TEM can be found at www.theearthymarketplace.com.

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