Friday, December 30, 2011

To Be Fair...

Barry Callebaut recently introduced Fairtrade-certified versions of their chocolate the 35.1% milk, 55.3% and 70% dark chocolate with no recipe adjustment. I hear Fairtrade a lot, but thought I might do a quick delve into what it actually means, so you can determine if it’s something you would like to support. To start, a definition off a webpage I found on the Green America website helpful; "Fair Trade is a system of exchange that honors producers, communities, consumers, and the environment. It is a model for the global economy rooted in people-to-people connections, justice, and sustainability”. It encourages women to participate in the work force and leadership roles, and strictly regulates human rights and child labor laws alike ensuring safe working conditions and finally a chance to take a small business that may have otherwise gone unnoticed and allow it to become part of the global market. Fairtrade certification ensures the product being sold is bought meets particular economic, social and environmental standards providing workers with fair pay for their labor, goods and empowering them to receive an honest ability to sustain themselves and the earth. 

Barry Callebaut will have agreed to pay a fair price for the chocolate, an amount that would cover cost of production, wages, and the basic necessities of living including food, shelter, clothing, medical care and education. Fairtrade items include coffee beans, cocoa pods and chocolate, sugar, rice, flowers, olive oil, tea, vanilla beans, wine, crafts, bananas and…sports balls. You learn something new everyday! 

Fair Trade is monitored by World Fair Trade Organization, a global community consisting of over 350 organizations committed to the principals of Fair Trade and they operate in over 70 countries and in five different regions of the world, including Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, and North American and the Pacific Rim. And for clarification, there is Fair Trade and Fairtrade. The difference is Fair Trade is the movement to make the world better. Fairtrade is the actual labeling stamp you see on products, like if you are ever in a Whole Foods, they are amazing with this. The Fairtrade Labeling Organization puts this stamp only on products that meet the standards from the supported producer.For more information, check out the following links and share what you learn!

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