This Saturday is World Fair Trade Day. Having worked in the fair trade movement for a while, it’s something I care a lot about. So I couldn’t be happier that this year I’m going to get to celebrate World Fair Trade Day by visiting a fair trade winery in Chile!
For beginners: Fair trade, broadly defined, is a global movement for, well . . . just what it sounds like, trade on fair terms. At it’s most basic, trade is the result of two people having something the other wants and trading for mutual benefit.
One problem with much global trade today is that a lot of people don’t benefit. And it’s not because they don’t have things of value or because they don’t want to trade. It’s because the rules are rigged against them. So-called “free trade” is anything but. Global “free trade” is highly regulated by wealthy nations and the corporations that influence them.
Fair trade says: “Hey, level the playing field.”
For a better understanding of the fair trade movement, check out Jackie DeCarlo’s brand new book: Fair Trade: A Beginner’s Guide. She blogs at Fair Trade Beginners.
I’ve written about Mongozo’s fair trade beers before. And my beer-drinking, fair-trade-coffee-selling pal Mel blogged here about Etica’s fair trade wines. I had the distinct pleasure of meeting the folks from Etica a few weeks ago at the Chicago Green Festival. They even gave me a bunch of fair trade wines to taste. Then we concocted a plan for me to go to Chile and visit one of the wineries whose fair trade wines they distribute here in the U.S.
So in a few weeks I’m going to visit Los Robles in Curico, Chile. That’s Tiffany and Brad, of Etica, in the picture. More about fair trade wine when I return from Chile in late June. Meanwhile, celebrate World Fair Trade Day by buying some fair trade goods: chocolate, coffee, bananas, and wine!