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How do you like your coffee? Once, the answer might have been “black” or “with milk and sugar.” Today, things are less straightforward. And, when it comes to beans, specialty blends and single origin coffees satisfy our desire for bolder, sweeter flavors. But it’s not all about taste: increasingly, consumers are viewing their choice of coffee—the second most traded global commodity after crude oil—as an ethical decision.
You might recall long ago hearing the telltale clinking of glass bottles early each morning as the milkman delivered fresh milk to your doorstep and took away the empties to be sterilized and reused. Recently, this obsolete practice has reemerged in a new form—not with milk this time but dozens of other products whose single-use plastic containers we’ve been discarding every day. The vast majority of these cannot be recycled—or for various reasons are not—ending up in landfills or clogging the earth’s rivers and oceans.
What leaps to mind when you think of France? Fine wine and perfume? Paris’s iconic fashion houses? Or maybe those endless varieties of cheese? Chances are, comic books are not high on your list. And yet the country of Voltaire and Proust has a voracious appetite for bandes déssinées —“BD” for short—as comics are called, with over 30% of French people reading comics “regularly.” They also have a passion for Japanese comics, or manga.