The Metro Convention Centre was an environmentalist’s paradise this past weekend, packed with green vendors, discussions about important issues and electric cars ready to be test-driven.
The Green Living Show was held from April 15 to 17 and was packed full of green enthusiasts. The decor was clean and crisp, with several green plants dotting the venue. It was a large indoor show to navigate and it kept my daughter and I busy all day. There was a lot to see at the show and among my favourites were the presentation of the Canadian Green Car Award, Every Tree Counts, and the Ecoparent Village. There were also several delicious samples offered by different food vendors to keep us energized throughout the day.
As an environmental buff and a deep hater of the car, the Canadian Green Car Award was the highlight for me. The winner of the 2016 Canadian Green Car Award, an award given to the best plug-in hybrid available on the market, the Chevrolet Volt. Other winners on display were the Nissan Leaf for the best battery-electric car, and the Hyundai Sonata for the best hybrid.
We got to explore the Nissan Leaf further, which was on display in the plug n’ drive area. Guest attendees could practice plugging the vehicle in to the charging station. It was a nice ride, and had a slick black interior. The vehicle was indiscernible from a regular vehicle aside from the front where the electric charger is plugged in. It was fun to take pictures in the car and see its features up close and personal.
There were several great products for women in the show. One of the most interesting companies was Damiva, who provided a lubricant for vaginal dryness of menopausal women. The product has no hormones and is an organic alternative. Another one of my favourites was NudyPatooty, a shirt made with organic bamboo that can be worn under silk shirts to avoid sweat stains, which is a very innovative idea. It would be the perfect solution for those nervous presenters who are concerned about ruining that silk blouse at a business meeting.
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After a bit of shopping, my daughter and I stopped at the EcoParent village. It was a nice reprise from walking and conversing with vendors, which can become monotonous for children. This area provided Montessori-sponsored toys for kids to play with and it was a hit with my little one. The wooden puzzles and games are a refreshing type of play, and brought me back to the good-old days pre-iphone and gameboy. There was also colouring and crafts. The area was quite small, but it was nice to see organic toys available for the kids.
The Green Living Show emphasized on the importance of trees in Ontario. Several booths were dedicated to protecting trees and the importance of planting. There was a large area called “Every Tree Counts”, which taught adults and kids about the importance of parks and trees. Tree planting is often forgotten amidst larger issues such as cap and trade or snazzy new organic products, so this was a smart addition to the show.
The only disappointment was the food area, dubbed the Pollinators’ Plate Food & Drink Pavilion. There was only one vegan option. The Grow-up was provided, which is a delicious vegan eatery but the rest of the food was laden with dairy and meat products. At an environmental festival, I expected more than one vegan alternative. To be limited to one choice definitely didn’t suit the theme of the afternoon. There was also a display of live bees in a slim glass case at the front of the food area for people to look at. Bees are easily stressed in lighted areas when creating honey in the hive and this was not the most animal-friendly decision on the part of the organizers.
The Green Living Show was definitely worth a visit to find cool sustainable products, listen to environmental discussions, and look at the newest electric car market. The show itself demonstrates how mainstream the discussion about the environment is becoming. Gone are the days of backyard granola talk. Instead, big stakeholders are looking into the future of financial and moral gain and, as it so happens, it’s green.