With respect to Alan Mitchell (MW last week) and ignoring the fact that his column says the same thing each time it runs, his points about value and values don’t necessarily hold true.
Yes, we may feel good when we buy a product from a company that treats its staff well and provides friendly service, or which sources its products ethically, or which aims its ads at our lifestyle, but we don’t really care if it doesn’t. Witness the success of the supermarkets’ value/economy ranges: I’m not saying they are produced by bad companies in bad ways, but we as consumers have very little idea of their provenance. They still sell well, though, as do all those other brands (Nike, Gap, Nestlé, most coffee brands) about which we’re meant to feel uneasy. Values are all very well, but as long as it’s cheap and decent we’ll buy it.
Rachel Waldimir, Franks Company, Brighton, Sussex