Hope without action is just a comforting illusion

Rosie Baker is Marketing Week’s specialist on sustainability and retail – and the two topics often go hand-in-hand. Her blog focuses on all things to do with sustainability, Corporate Social Responsibility and ethical business.


I got an email yesterday from someone I didn’t know with the subject line “The protein Crunch”. All it included was this image telling me that it took 24,000 litres of water to produce a kilogram of beef and 30,000 litres of water to manufacture my mobile phone.

Intriguing and a little confusing but after tapping the name into Google, I came to this page: telling me that the teaser I’d just received was part of a marketing campaign for an upcoming book called The protein Crunch – Civilisation on the brink by Jason Drew and David Lorimer.

So I visited Amazon and found out a bit more about the book. The book claims to reveal “the shocking truth” about how people have abused the planet, degrading the natural resource that produce the food we eat and putting us in the rather dire straights of not being able to produce enough food at the exact time the global population is expanding at its fastest.

The blurb claims that the book offers “conditional hope for the future” because “hope without action is just a comforting illusion”.

There are a lot of brands also struggling with sustainability and how to get the message across and while I don’t disagree with the book’s points, it seems like a threatening way to go about communicating the message that en masse, we need to take better care of the planet by polluting less and conserving more.

Will have to read the book before I can really judge blurb and book jacket alone fill me with a feeling of dread about the plight of planet earth in a “the end is nigh” kind of way, rather than galvanising me into taking action.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email customerservices@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here