Celebrate Fair Trade Month

At Revolutionary Act, one of our goals is to celebrate those who are striving to make healthy changes in the world. We also believe in celebrating what’s good and October is Fair Trade month!

Why Fair Trade?
Buying fair trade certified products means that the money you spend on quality products improves the daily lives of workers and producers that make them as well as the communities in which we all live.

Your dollars also promote safe worker conditions, ensure the rights of children and promote environmentally sustainable practices. Your dollars also celebrate and respect cultural identity.

Multiple Approaches
There are many different visions, models and approaches being used to creating a fairer and more sustainable food system. Here’s a roundup of some of them. Investigate each group’s mission and vision, and support the one that rings truest to your sense of social justice.

  • Equal Exchange – We love this worker-owned co-operative group so much that we included them on our list of Revolutionary Resources. We respect their commitment to creating a fair food system by aiding small farmers. Check out their “Stand With Small Farmer’s Campaign” and see what you can do to help.
  • Fair Trade USA – This group uses a market-based approach to garner fair wages and prices for family farmers and workers. They believe “conscious consumers” can cause a fundamental shift in business practices.
  • Fair Trade Federation – A trade association that strengthens and promotes North American organizations fully committed to fair trade.
  • Green America – A handy resource that helps you locate Fair Trade businesses and connects you to fair trade groups.
  • Global Exchange – This international human rights organization is dedicated to promoting social, economic and environmental justice around the world. Their motto: People Power, Not Corporate Power!
  • Ten Thousand Villages – This fair trade retailer was founded in 1946 from the trunk of founder Edna Ruth Byler’s car and is now expanded to 390 retail outlets in the United States.
  • United Students for Fair Trade – This nifty group hopes to foster the fair trade spirit at a young age and focuses on helping students organize fair trade groups in high school and college campuses.

Despite the differing approaches, visions and missions, one thing is clear: if you want to advocate for sustainable and fair economic and environmental policies, then buying fair trade certified products is a great way to vote your values with your dollars every day. You’ll help small farmers worldwide improve their lives, and feel great as you enjoy the products you buy.

Heidi Wachter is the Community Engagement Specialist for Experience Life magazine.