Skip to main content

Privacy Policy

At Ethical Consumer, we’re committed to protecting and respecting your privacy.

This Privacy Policy explains when and why we collect personal information about people who visit our website, how we use it, the conditions under which we may disclose it to others and how we keep it secure.

We may change this Privacy Policy from time to time, so please check this page occasionally to ensure that you’re happy with any changes.

Any questions regarding this Policy and our privacy practices should be sent: 
by email to 
or by writing to Unit 21, 41 Old Birley Street, Manchester, M15 5RF, UK
or you can telephone 0161 226 2929.

1. What is Ethical Consumer?

We are an independent, not-for-profit, multi-stakeholder co-operative with open membership, founded in 1989 and based in Manchester.

We produce six magazines a year, plus special content for our website. We host events, including our own annual conference in London. We also provide research and consultancy services to ethically minded businesses.

For nearly 30 years we have been the hub of the ethical consumer movement, helping consumers to shop ethically, campaigners to challenge corporate power and businesses to improve their supply chain.

2. How do we collect information from you?

We collect browsing information on your IP address, what pages are accessed and when. This is done via cookies. For more details on cookies see below.

We also collect personal information such as your name, email address, postal address and phone number when you subscribe to our mailing list or take out a subscription.

If you purchase a subscription using Direct Debit, financial information will be added to our customer relationship management software. This is to enable use to process future Direct Debit payments.

If you purchase a one-off subscription through our website, your card information is not held by us, it is collected by our third party payment processors, PayPal -  and Fidelity Payment Services -, who specialise in the secure online capture and processing of credit/debit card transactions.

3. How is your information used?

We use your information to:
    • Process a subscription or an order that you have made;
    • Carry out our obligations arising from any contracts entered into by you and us (e.g. send you copies of the magazine, information about your subscription);
    • Notify you of changes to our services;
    • Send you weekly email newsletters which include information about content on our website, updates on campaigns, information about events we are hosting, and updates on our associated companies, such as the Fair Tax Mark and Save Our Bank;
    • Monitor how you use the website, and how you got to the website;
    • Seek your views or comments on the services we provide;
    • Deal with entries into any competitions we run.

We review our retention periods for personal information on a regular basis.

We are legally required to hold some types of information to fulfil our statutory obligations.

We will hold your personal information on our systems for as long as is necessary for the relevant activity, or as long as is set out in any relevant contract you hold with us.

4. Who has access to your information?

We will not sell or rent your information to third parties.

We will not share your information with third parties for marketing purposes. We may occasionally share anonymised score customisation data with academic institutions for research purposes.

4.1 Third Party Service Providers working on our behalf

We may pass your information to our third party service providers, agents subcontractors and other associated organisations for the purposes of completing tasks and providing services to you on our behalf (for example to process subscriptions and send you mailings).

However, when we use third party service providers, we disclose only the personal information that is necessary to deliver the service and we have a contract in place that requires them to keep your information secure and not to use it for their own direct marketing purposes.

Ethical Consumer uses the following Third Party Service Providers:

Google Analytics

Our website uses Google Analytics, a web analytics service provided by Google, Inc.. Google Analytics uses cookies, which are text files placed on your computer, to help the us to  analyse how visitors use the website. It also send 3rd party requests without cookies

The information generated by the cookie about your use of the website (including your IP address) will be transmitted to and stored by Google on servers in the United States. Google will use this information for the purpose of evaluating your use of the website, compiling reports on website activity to be looked at by Ethical Consumer, and providing other services relating to website activity and internet usage.

Google may also transfer this information to third parties where required to do so by law, or where such third parties process the information on Google's behalf. Google will not associate your IP address with any other data held by Google.

There is a Google Analytics opt-out extension for your browser here -  

Our website also uses Google Analytics performance reports relating to demographics and interests and reports. You can disable Google Analytics for display advertising here:


Hotjar is a tool that compiles data on how visitors are using our website. It uses cookies to collect non-personal information.

Examples of the type of information collected include, but is not limited to, pages visited, how pages are used and interacted with, type of device and browser used and the country you are in.

For more information on how Hotjar collects data, what data it collects and how to opt out of it collecting your information, please read Hotjar's own privacy policy -

Social Media

So you can easily 'Like' or share our content on the likes of Facebook and Twitter we have included sharing buttons on our site.

The privacy implications on this will vary from social network to social network and will be dependent on the privacy settings you have chosen on these networks.

5. Your choices

You can change your marketing preferences at any time by contacting us by email at  or by telephone on 0161 226 2929.

You can also opt out of receiving weekly email newsletters at any time using the ‘unsubscribe’ button at the bottom of any such email.

5.1 How to access and update your information

The accuracy of your information is important to us.

If you are a subscriber you can update your information by logging into the website and editing your profile.

If you are not a subscriber but wish to update your email address please follow the link at the bottom of every email from us.

Alternatively if you change email address, or any of the other information we hold is inaccurate or out of date, please;

email us at: 
or write to us at Unit 21, 41 Old Birley Street, Manchester, M15 5RF, UK
or call us on 0161 226 2929.

5.2 Security precautions in place to protect the loss, misuse or alteration of your information.

When you give us personal information, we take steps to ensure that it’s treated securely. Any sensitive information (such as credit or debit card details) is encrypted. When you are on a secure page, a lock icon will appear on the bottom of web browsers such as Microsoft Internet Explorer.

Non-sensitive details (your email address etc.) are transmitted normally over the Internet, and this can never be guaranteed to be 100% secure. As a result, while we strive to protect your personal information, we cannot guarantee the security of any information you transmit to us, and you do so at your own risk.

Once we receive your information, we make our best effort to ensure its security on our systems.

Where we have given (or where you have chosen) a password which enables you to access certain parts of our websites, you are responsible for keeping this password confidential.

We ask you not to share your password with anyone.


6. Cookies

This website uses cookies, as almost all websites do, to help provide you with the best experience we can. Cookies are small text files that are placed on your computer or mobile phone when you browse websites.

Our cookies help us:
    • Make our website work as you'd expect 
    • Save you having to login every time you visit the site 
    • Remember your settings during and between visits 
    • Improve the speed/security of the site 
    • Allow you to share pages with social networks like Facebook 
    • Continuously improve our website 
    • Make our marketing more efficient (ultimately helping us to offer the service we do at the price we do)

We do not use cookies to:
    • Collect any personally identifiable information (without your express permission) 
    • Collect any sensitive information (without your express permission) 
    • Pass personally identifiable data to third parties 
    • Pay sales commissions

6.1 Granting us permission to use cookies

If the settings on your software that you are using to view this website (your browser) are adjusted to accept cookies we take this, and your continued use of our website, to mean that you are fine with this.

Should you wish to remove or not use cookies from our site you can learn how to do this below, however doing so will likely mean that our site will not work as you would expect.

6.2 Cookies on this website

Our own cookies

We use these cookies to make our website work including:
    • Making our subscription and registration pages work 
    • Determining if you are logged in or not 
    • Remembering your customisation settings 
    • Remembering if you have accepted our terms and conditions

There is no way to prevent these cookies being set other than to not use our site. cookies:


Disabling these cookies is likely to break the Youtube videos on this website:

    • PREF
    • YSC
    • GPS

Google Analytics

We use Google Analytics to compile visitor statistics such as how many people have visited our website, what type of technology they are using (e.g. Mac or Windows which helps to identify when our site isn't working as it should for particular technologies), how long they spend on the site, what page they look at etc.

Google also collects data for advertising purposes. This provides us with demographic (age and gender) and interest information that Google has about you. You can manage your google advertising settings and information here -

This helps us to continuously improve our website. These so called 'analytics' programs also tell us, on an anonymous basis, how people reached this site (e.g. from a search engine) and whether they have been here before helping us to put more money into developing our services for you instead of marketing spend.
Google Analytics Cookies:
    • __utma 
    • __utmb 
    • __utmc
    • __utmt
    • __utmz
    • _ga
    • _gid
    • _gat 

6.3 Turning Cookies Off

You can usually switch cookies off by adjusting your browser settings to stop it from accepting cookies.

Doing so however will likely limit the functionality of our's and a large proportion of the world's websites as cookies are a standard part of most modern websites

It may be that you concerns around cookies relate to so called "spyware". Rather than switching off cookies in your browser you may find that anti-spyware software achieves the same objective by automatically deleting cookies considered to be invasive. Learn more about managing cookies with antispyware software.


7. Links to other websites

Our website may contain links to websites run by other organisations. This privacy policy applies only to our website‚ so we encourage you to read the privacy statements on the other websites you visit. We cannot be responsible for the privacy policies and practices of other sites even if you access them using links from our website.

In addition, if you linked to our website from a third party site, we cannot be responsible for the privacy policies and practices of the owners and operators of that third party site and recommend that you check the policy of that third party site.

8. 16 or Under

We are concerned to protect the privacy of children aged 16 or under. If you are aged 16 or under‚ please get your parent/guardian's permission beforehand whenever you provide us with personal information.

9. Your rights

Under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and The Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA) you have a number of rights with regard to your personal data.

You have the right to:
    1. Be informed about the collection and use of your personal data
    2. Access to your personal data
    3. Rectification of your personal data
    4. Have the personal data we hold on you erased
    5. Restrict the processing of your personal data
    6. Object to the processing of your personal data
    7. Have your personal data transferred to another controller/processor


10. Identity and contact details of controller and data protection contact

Ethical Consumer Research Association is the controller and processor of data for the purposes of the DPA 18 and GDPR.

If you have any concerns as to how your data is processed you can contact:

enquiries [at]

or you can write to:

Ethical Consumer Research Association
Unit 21, 41 Old Birley Street
M15 5RF
United Kingdom

If you are unhappy with how we are using your information and are unable to resolve the issue with us, you can raise the matter with the Information Commissioners Office by calling 0303 123 1113 or visiting 

11. Review of this Policy

We keep this Policy under regular review. This Policy was last updated in May 2018.