5 of 6
BACKNEXT
10% Shift
10% Shift
Jon O'Toole in his furniture shop, Grand, holds out a business card advertising the 10% Shift campaign.
Somerville, Mass.

The 10% Shift has a very tangible goal: Motivate consumers to shift 10% of their spending to local businesses.

Started by The New England Local Business Forum (NELBF), a coalition of sixteen organizations representing every state in the region, the campaign has drawn adherents throughout the area. "The movement came together in October, because the economic crisis was taking hold," says Joe Grafton, director of the Somerville Local First organization.

The campaign underscores the economics of buying local. NELBF points to a study from Civic Economics forecasting that if 600,000 area residents shift 10% of their purchases from chains to independent businesses, that local community would gain 1,600 jobs and $140 million in new economic activity within one year.

10PercentShift.org provides consumers with a calculator to figure out where they can make the shift in their daily budget, and asks shoppers to sign a pledge to buy locally.

Jon O'Toole, co-owner of Grand, a furniture store in Somerville, has 10% Shift business cards on his store counter. "The more and more we do it, the more it'll become accepted," he says. "Big Box stores aren't bad, but I'll most likely reciprocate in the town. I go to the same coffee shop every day with money from Grand."

While the movement hasn't given O'Toole much of a boost in sales, he says it's helping by building awareness. "If my customers talk about why they come in, usually they mention that it's because I am local," he says.

The concept has migrated beyond New England. Charleston, S.C., has launched its own 10% Shift campaign, and Grafton fielded calls from city planners in Chico, Calif., and several towns in New York who want to find out how a similar program could benefit their communities.

NEXT: Buy Bowdoinham

Email | Print | Share  |  RSS
 
google my aol my msn my yahoo! netvibes
Paste this link into your favorite RSS desktop reader
See all CNNMoney.com RSS FEEDS (close)
LAST UPDATE: Aug 05 2009 | 11:06 AM ET
Sponsored by
More Galleries
San Francisco: The best city to make things From electric motorcycles to death shrouds, San Francisco's manufacturing sector is booming. More
6 designers shaking up fashion These designers are changing the way we dress, accessorize and shop, from custom made-to-fit dresses to smart jewelry that's actually stylish. More
8 must-have travel apps Whether you've got wanderlust or an airline grievance, here are some apps to pack onto your phone. More

Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer.

Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved.

Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved.

Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor’s Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2014 and/or its affiliates.