If you've seen Fair Trade marks around and just walk past it consider the difference you could have been making. Most people know coffee being the main source of Fair trade produce but their is so much more out their that you may be unaware of.
If you are not sure on what Fair trade is it's a program started in the late 1940's where United States started selling needle work from Puerto Rico and started the first formal Fair Trade store in 1958. It is to bring better prices, much needed better working conditions, local sustainability and best of all fair terms for the farmers and workers in the developing world.
Fair trade looks at all injustice of conventional trade of which allows the weak or poor produces to be paid sustainable prices. This allows these farmers who struggle to develop their produce and environment and have more control over their lives.
I watched a documentary a while ago on the cost of coffee beans and how the poor farmers who work so hard to develop there produce, transported it to a seller and after delivering more than 200 kilos in beans they only walked away with minimal dollars to what their coffee would make thousands once sold. It identified to me how unfair and how abused these farmers were. It was shocking to see a farmer get excited about the few dollars he had when the seller themselves were about to place a 200% profit margin per kilo and walk away with that money.
By enforcing Fair trade it helps these farmers tackle poverty and improve their produce quality that we so desire to consume.
By having Cadbury who is such a well known brand to all of us demonstrates the empowerment that Fair trade is bringing us. This itself will support the cocoa industry and in both 2009 and 2010 Cadbury was the highest purchaser from the cocoa farmers.
But it's just not cocoa or coffee that are in need of support. It includes hand crafts, honey, banana's, cotton, wine, tea and sugar, fresh fruit and gold the list continues. It shows that not just us that are struggling with the economic crisis, it's effecting everyone and we need to come together and support each other as much as we can.
Within the Association of Fair trade you have major supporters such as AusAid - assisting in developing countries to reduce poverty and increase sustainability. NZAid - supporting Fair trade and building consumer awareness. Oxfam - challenging businesses that choose to sell unfair trade and assist in the Asia Pacific Fair trade unity. Trade Aid - A non profit organisation increasing the well being of suffering or disadvantaged farmers. Christian World Service and World Vision - assisting the communities with the poverty and hunger.
For me as a person who takes interest in where our produce may be imported from and think about the % increase traders mark on everything and what the farmers had to sell it for, I have become a large supporter of Fair trade. I believe that the little man who has grown, hand picked and transported it to a buyer that they have done the work and should be shown respect for bringing us food when they themselves struggle to provide for their own families.
So if you believe in helping struggling farmers and and want to join me and support them to get a better $ for their produce then look for the independent consumer label (shown below) which guarantees they are a certified Fair trade supporters who have provided the farmers with the better $ for there produce of which is increasing standards in 20 countries.
! MAKE IT A FAIR WORLD !