What is Fair Trade?

April 26, 2010 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Fair Trade 

If you haven’t noticed, the United States is not the only country with a suffering economy. As a matter of fact, even the worst off American is better off than some of the people in countries who we trade with, who work and work and work to still not be able to pay their expenses or feed their families. This is where Fair Trade comes in; it is a principle of trading fairly with farmers and workers in the name of equality. Making a heftier profit off of foods usually results in someone having to go without down the line somewhere, and in most cases poor farmers in countries around the world are the ones who have to pay the cost for our delicious and nutritious food.

What’s Wrong With Regular Trade Products?

International trade policies are not in the best interests of everyone. As a matter of fact, they are not in the best interests of hardly anyone, forcing hard working people out of business and allowing them to loose their farms and livelihoods in the process. Why must this be? They did what they were supposed to do and contributed to the world’s supply of food. In essence, they were just not paid enough for it.

Fair Trade is Different

Fair trade foods are foods that are grown and purchased outside the realm of international trade. These products are ensured to be worth purchasing and of high quality, but they are also purchased at a rate that is much more sensible to the farmers in question. Their products are purchased for a price that allows them to produce more rather than shut down their businesses, and they can feed their families even though their business is making sure that we are able to feed ours.

There are three main groups involved in the Fair Trade process. They are the producers and creators of the product, the importers, and those who certify that all products fall under the guidelines of Fair Trade. The idea of Fair Trade is a collaborative effort between those who produce it, those who certify and make sure that guidelines are met, and those who sell. Of course, the most important group of them all are those who purchase Fair Trade classified products, as they are helping to ensure a future for more people than they would have ever thought possible.

Keep in mind that Fair Trade is not only restricted to food. This is just how it is most commonly associated. Art and other products can fall under Fair Trade guidelines as well, just so long as all of the requirements are met. While many people fear going against International Trade and what they already know, there is no reason not to get into Fair Trade. Consider it your contribution toward the bettering of a life for someone who needs it, and one load off of your conscience.