We all know the reasons for buying Fair Trade, but sometimes forget that we can make small changes in many different aspects of our lives to enable farmers and craftspeople to earn living wages, to boycott the use of slave labor, and help make the world a better place. When shopping for Fair Trade products that don’t fit any of the areas below, use the free2work app that helps determine whether or not an item was made by slave labor. Although the app won’t necessarily prove that the product is Fair Trade, it will at least help you avoid making purchases that are exploiting people by using forced, unpaid workers. 5 Ways to Shop Fair Trade Products:
1. Buy Christmas Presents, Birthday Gifts, Clothing and Home Décor for Yourself Online. The internet is now teeming with Fair Trade e-commerce sites: SERRV, Ten Thousand Villages, Krochet Kids International, Freeset, and many others are offering quality products that enable the craftspeople to earn a living wage and receive training and health benefits while at it.
2. Look for the “Fair Trade” Tag on Coffee and Chocolate. Even some large chain grocery stores now include Fair Trade coffee. Bartells carries excellent Fair Trade chocolate and even Starbucks now offers Fair Trade selections. When in doubt, ask.
3. Shop Local Farmers’ Markets. Buying from farmers’ markets enables the food growers in your area to get the most profit for their work since the produce does not go through multiple chains of secondary sources who would otherwise get a portion of the sale.
4. Patronize Local Coffee Shops and Restaurants That Serve Fair Trade Coffee. Of course, a combination of Fair Trade coffee with locally grown products is the best!
5. Buy conflict-free Diamonds. Alternatively, some couples choose to use rubies or other gemstone that can be guaranteed as conflict-free, or repurpose an antique jewel or ring. Heritage jewels from grandmothers and great-grandmothers can be both meaningful and non-conflict sourced. If planning a wedding, check out the lovely resources from the Fair Trade wedding guide.
Do you have ideas for ways to shop Fair Trade? Suggest them, please!
Emily Williamson is the Communications Director at Lusso Bags. You can learn more about Lusso Bags on its website and find Lusso Bags on Facebook and Twitter. Learn more about Guest Author Posts and how to submit your own article here.