Ethical Shopping

Beyond Fair Wages–Keeping Girls in School

Beyond Fair Wages–Keeping Girls in School

When you purchase a Fair Trade Designs product, you know you’re supporting fair wages for the person who made it.  But your purchases also support additional resources for the artisans, particularly when it comes to educating girls. It’s difficult for girls in developing countries to receive an education past primary school. In most poor countries, families must […]

How Not To Convince Friends To Buy Fair Trade

October is a month full of months—and days.  The best-known is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  It’s also Pizza Month and Computer Learning Month.  Each day of October has multiple celebrations attached to it like World Farm Animals Day (10/2), Ship In A Bottle Day (10/4), Pierogi Day (10/8), and Be Bald and Free Day (10/14). […]

Are Free Trade and Fair Trade The Same?

Many people seem to think free trade and fair trade are interchangeable phrases.  But they’re two very different concepts that can be hard to explain. The Fair Trade Federation has created this brief overview of these two  complex topics.

Women: The Backbone of Fair Trade

I can’t think of any other global enterprise where women run the show on both the front and back ends.

Poetry Embroidered on Cloth

Have you ever heard of Kantha quilting?  I hadn’t either until a couple of years ago when I saw fair trade products using the quilts. The centuries-old technique was originated by poor women in Western Bengal to make quilts from their saris to keep their babies warm.  The quilts eventually became objects of hospitality, and […]

Zulugrass Jewelry and the Maasai Tribeswomen of Kenya

Zulugrass Jewelry and the Maasai Tribeswomen of Kenya

  In 2001, a terrible drought persisted for several years in Kenya and brought devastation to the pasture lands. The livelihood of the indigenous Maasai disappeared as their cattle died. The men had to drive the few remaining cattle hundreds of miles away in search of better grazing. The women left behind looked desperately for […]

What exactly do those fair trade certified labels mean?

What exactly do those fair trade certified labels mean?

When you’re out grocery shopping and see a product with a logo that says “Fair Trade Certified,” what does it mean? It depends on the logo and, because there are quite a few of them, it can get confusing. A short explanation of the major fair trade marks.