Walking the grocery store aisles can be daunting if you know a thing or two about international supply chains. They are complex and multifaceted with goods traveling hundreds of miles to reach your store shelves. Agriculture workers at the other end of the chain are some of the most vulnerable on the planet, with dangerous work, few protections and low pay. Conscientious shoppers are met with a conundrum when they look to buy ethically produced products. While the puzzle certainly hasn’t been solved – Fair Trade certification is making it a lot easier for consumers to vote for ethically sourced goods with their wallets.
Certification is not just for coffee and chocolate anymore. Fair Trade USA certified 120 new products in 2012, and you can find them in every aisle of the grocery store.
Fair Trade has quite a complicated supply chain of its own – the NGO works with 750 importers, manufacturers and brands to bring Fair Trade Certified products to over 100,000 retail locations in North America.
“With support from consumers and businesses alike, famers and workers have earned more than $77 million in community development premiums to farmers and workers since 1998,” said Mary Jo Cook, Chief Impact Officer for Fair Trade USA. “Fair Trade Month is a time to celebrate this accomplishment and inspire a new generation of passionate supporters to help us deliver more impact to more people.”
When you vote with your wallet and buy Fair Trade Certified products, you know you’re getting a high quality product, improving lives, and protecting the environment at the same time.
If you want to feel good about the products you buy, take the Fair Trade Month pledge here and say “Count me in!”