Auction site eBay has launched a new branch of its sprawling empire, aimed at bigging up "People Positive" and "Eco Positive" goods.

Promising that the new community functions in "empowering you to shop in ways that align with your personal values," WorldofGood.com offers a marketplace stuffed with fixed-price goods categorised by social or environmental factors.

Detailed origins

Searching for a product will often result in displaying a photo of whoever grew the coffee or made the earrings, details of the product's origins and whether any of the proceeds will go to charity.

"We really want consumers to drill down into the detail of what's behind that product," said WorldofGood.com General Manager Robert Chatwani.

Already, he said, the market for products that demonstrate such ethical awareness is growing, quoting the Natural Marketing Institute's estimate that the US market for such shopping was $209 billion in 2005, but will rise to an estimated $420 billion in 2010.

The site works in a similar to eBay, charging its current several hundred sellers listing fees and taking commission on sales. All transactions, says CNN, will be made through PayPal.