Fair Trade: How to Vote with Your Wallet

In honor of Fair Trade Month, our friends at Fair Trade USA asked us to share this great video about how to make every grocery purchase matter.

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!”

Jen Boynton

Jen Boynton has been the editor in chief of TriplePundit, for 8 years! With over 6 million annual readers, TriplePundit is the leading publication on the Triple Bottom Line. Prior to TriplePundit, Jen received an MBA in Sustainable Management from the Presidio Graduate School and a degree in Sociology from Pitzer College. She spent a few years in the non-profit policy sector as well, but we won't talk about that. In her work with TriplePundit she's helped clients from SAP to PwC with their sustainability communications messaging. When she's not at work, she volunteers as a CASA -- court appointed special advocate for children in the foster care system. She enjoys losing fights with her toddler overload and eating toast scraps. She lives with her family in sunny San Diego.

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