Saturday, September 20, 2014

Sprouts Farmers Market Supports Fair Trade!

Thank you Sprouts Farmers Market on Branham Lane in San Jose for supporting Fair Trade. Sprouts is offering Fair Trade products in the form of coffee, tea, chocolate,
sugar and much more. Thank you!!

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Take Slavery Out of Shopping

The relationship between our everyday purchases and 
modern day slavery seems improbable. But the 
connection is very real. It just remains hidden 
from public view.

In poor regions of the world impoverished families 
are targeted by traffickers with promises of a better 
life for their children. Unsuspecting parents give up 
sons and daughters who end up in forced and 
abusive work situations on farms, factories and 

A look inside the chocolate industry illustrates the 
problem. Cocoa beans, from which chocolate is 
manufactured, are encased in heavy pods that hang 
from trees. Their harvest is back-breaking work for 
adults; brutal for children. Yet  284,000 children, 
64% of whom are under 14 years, work in forced 
and abusive conditions on cocoa farms in West 
Africa. An investigative report details 13 hour work 
days on the plantation – filled with harsh physical 
labor, punctuated by beatings, and ending with a 
night of fitful sleep on a wooden plank in a locked 
room filled with other slaves. Most of the 15 billion 
dollars of chocolate that we consume in the United 
States each year is tainted with this forced and 
abusive child labor. 

Parallel stories of both child and adult exploitation 
are found in the supply chains of coffee, tea, sugar, 
bananas, jewelry, clothing, and the list goes on. 

But it doesn’t have to be this way. Fair Trade, the 
business model that monitors and assures that small 
producers are treated with dignity, is changing the 
lives and futures of millions of small farmers, 
producers and their children. 

Fair Trade confronts poverty and trafficking in three ways.

Prevention. Assuring decent wages for parents, 
along with funds set aside for community 
development (schools, clinics and the like), Fair Trade 
stands as a powerful antidote to the lure of  a ‘better 
life elsewhere’ that is held out by traffickers.

Abolition. Fair Trade certification is sought out by 
businesses wanting to maintain their market share. 
This certification is given only to a business that 
cleans up its act and demonstrates that forced or
abusive labor is not part of its supply chain.

Rehabilitation. Fair Trade Cooperatives provide safe 
haven and dignified work to victims rescued from
brothels and other situations of exploitation.  

Thanks to informed consumers, Fair Trade is the 
fastest growing segment of the retail economy. We 
have the ability to break the chains - simply by 
relentlessly pursuing Fair Trade at every 
opportunity. Ask for Fair Trade. Buy Fair Trade.

- Courtesy of Joe Michon