Automobiles: Cars remain a big-ticket purchase, and a handful of automakers are recognizing the needs and wants of people with dogs. Toyota introduced its new Venza, a sleek sport sedan tricked out in custom-designed dog accessories (among them, seat covers and restraints) from Kurgo. Subaru’s Forester offered similar canine accessories made by Bergan. The design and materials are upgrades over similar efforts made by other automakers in recent years. This is further evidence that the dog-owner demographic is affecting sales and, quite possibly, design.
And the big trend? Natural certification—the certification wars have begun! “USDA Organic,” “Certified Organic,” “Approved by Co-Op America,” “Oeko-Tex® Certified”—each stamp of approval carries a different validation and has a different meaning. As a green consumer, be prepared to research a glossary of terms and seals. Everyone wants a piece of the green pie, and the (educated) buyer wins.