While considering products and producers, we all have to make a choices about who to support. Some online retailers offer products made as cheaply as possible, focusing on cheap manufacturing and labor and sometimes under dubious means that may prove profitable in the short term. Others place value on remaining as ethical as possible and putting integrity over greed.
For LACS, the choice is simple. One of our goals is to help people gain momentum on the path to becoming their greater selves. One way we do that is by partnering with producers under the Fair Trade Federation. Handmade products keep the connection between producer and consumer authentic and deep. This helps the consumer as much as it does the producer. Here are 10 more reasons to keep it real by supporting Fair Trade and authentic producers of handmade goods.
1. Fair Trade means fair pay and working conditions for farmers and producers. Fair Trade products are made in safe and healthy working conditions, where farmers and producers receive a fair price and have a voice in how their workplace is run.
2. Fair Trade is better for the environment. Fair Trade supports sustainable practices that minimize our environmental footprint.
3. Fair Trade means high quality goods. Artisans take pride in their work. Crafts are often handmade, which translates into closer attention to detail and in the end higher-quality products.
4. Fair Trade means better tasting food. Farmers are involved and invested in the entire production process, and crops are grown and harvested in smaller quantities. As a result, Fair Trade food is fresher and tastier.
5. Fair Trade is safe. Fair Trade actively promotes integrated farm management systems that improve soil fertility and preserve valuable ecosystems, and limit the use of harmful agrochemicals that present dangers to farmers’ health. That means food that’s safer for you and for the people who grow it.
6. Fair Trade supports communities. By working through cooperative structures, Fair Trade artisans and small farmers are able to invest Fair Trade earnings in their communities, improving housing, healthcare, and schools.
7. Fair Trade is trade farmers can count on. Fair Trade is committed to strengthening direct partnerships between buyers and producers. These partnerships provide an avenue for buyers to purchase quality products from people they trust, and offer a sustainable and reliable way for farmers, artisans and their families to improve their livelihood.
8. Fair Trade connects you with other cultures. Fair Trade products are unique to the places they come from and the people who make them. Farmers and artisans are involved in the entire process, and Fair Trade products reflect the people and cultures they come from.
9. Fair Trade means sustainable local economies. Fair Trade gives farmers and artisans control of their own future. They can build their own businesses, rather than working for a middle man, and the profits stay in their communities and go back into their businesses.
10. Fair Trade means what you buy matters. By choosing Fair Trade products, you are not only accessing high quality products, you are making a difference in the lives of the people who grow the food you eat and the goods you use.
© Fair Trade Resource Network 2008. All rights reserved.
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