Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Fair Trade is Sexy

I know I have to explain the headliner (Sorry if the "sexy" headline meant that you were blocked from coming to this site). I had the privilege last Christmas of going to a Fair Trade plantation in Bribri, Costa Rica. The consistent and fair price that Fair Trade secures for the cocoa farmed in this community has radically altered its future. Firstly, there is the sex. The consistent and fair price means that men no longer have to leave the community to look for employment to compensate for the fluctuating and unfair pricing of "free-markets"; consequently, they get to stay at home for longer periods of time. There is more sex in marriage (and less outside); there is a strengthening of families. Secondly, the community has pooled some of its earnings and constructed its own high school. So what? So now the kids too feel that they have a future in the community, they now know that they no longer have to leave the community to seek further education, they too feel that there is a place in the community for them. See what can happen when you choose Fair Trade? What if Fair trade wasn't simply a case of choosing either this or that? What if we could see that Fair Trade is in fact a sign of the Kingdom of God, a witness of our salvation? What if we started to see that Fair Trade is not a kind of product but the way God wants trade to be organized? Fairly. What difference would that make?

3 comments:

  1. I heard you were a little preoccupied with the sexy theme the last few days!! But, no, actually totally agree - we can look beyond the 'this or that' option we have in the supermarket and make choosing fair trade a given. Only because we know what's behind it and how much of a difference it really makes:)

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  2. i think the knowing is the vital issue here, when people know and understand its easy to make buying fair trade the normal.

    I guess it then comes down to those that know telling those that dont.

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  3. And that its not necessarily about the fair trade system as it stands, because not even that is perfect. its abut fairness, equal oppotunities to live life with basic need met and more. it is greater than the system!

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