In the dentist's waiting room there was one of those monthly glossy thick You're Ugly magazines like Marie Claire or Cosmopolitan which had 20 top tips on how to buy green. The bit about buying ethical diamonds was the camel spine snapper.
But running it a close second comes this ad in the Oberver for Australian wine Banrock Station.
They coo about how they sponsor stuff at the Eden Project, who develop ideas 'to help protect and sustain the environment'.
I've got one such idea. How about not exacerbating climate change by shipping wine from about as far away as it's possible to get?
In last month's Howard Memorial Lecture, Green MEP Caroline Lucas said
Between 1968 and 1998 world food production increased by 84 per cent, yet over the same period international trade in food products almost trebled, with trade flows doubling for almost every food category.
Moreover, closer inspection of the figures reveals that a large part of this growth in international trade in food is accounted for by simultaneous imports and exports of the same products between exactly the same countries!
I wrote a report a few years back, called "The Great Food Swap", which documented the absurdity of this phenomenon. The UK and EU provide telling case studies. In one year, Britain imported 61,400 tonnes of poultry meat from the Netherlands and in precisely the same year, it exported 33,100 tonnes of poultry meat to the Netherlands.
In the same year it imported 240,000 tonnes of pork and 125,000 tonnes of lamb, while it exported 195,000 tonnes of pork and 102,000 tonnes of lamb.
The UK imported 126 million litres of milk and exported 270 million litres of milk.
Ah, but whilst it's mad to ship a foodstuff like milk that is utterly generic, wines of the world have different character. Sure, it's a heavy container containing around 85% water, but all the difference is in that last 15%. Right?
First off, let's just be clear that wine is not a necessary foodstuff, it is only ever consumed as a luxury. So when our transport use has to be curtailed then mass consumption of imported luxuries should be jostling with the swapping of generic products at the top of the list.
But even on its own terms, the argument of different countries making different wines doesn't have even the dimmest persuasive power. Even if you don't want to go for excellent British wines but prefer classic flavours, we are adjacent to France, the country that produces not only a massive variety of wines but among them the finest on earth. Even if you want dirt cheap rough stuff, that means central or eastern European.
So there is simply no excuse - be it on grounds of conscience, value or quality - for Europeans buying non-European wine.
Banrock Station's using eco-PR to sell maximum wine miles is as cynical as (I've linked to them to prove that they really exist) the Reebok Human Rights Awards, the Alcan Prize for Sustainability or Nestlé Award for Social Commitment.