You may be familiar with Fair Trade. You may be like the majority of people out there, and you’ve heard of Fair Trade but have no idea what it means. Or perhaps you’ve never put those two words together, and are thinking to yourself… “doesn’t she mean ‘free trade’?” Well, here’s an introduction and a bit of an explanation of why we think Fair Trade is so important.
fair trade (fâr trād): a partnership between producers and consumers that promotes fair wages, workers’ rights, financial sustainability and cultural autonomy for producers, and encourages consumer advocacy and cooperation in the global marketplace.
We all buy things. These things are generally made by other people. As buyers-of-things, we have some responsibility to understand who’s making our things, and why they’re making them.
As people, we have a responsibility to other people. So we ask a few basic questions:
“Are the makers-of-goods earning a decent living? Are they able to feed their families, send their children to school, and be productive members of their communities? Or are they de-facto slaves to a boss (perhaps a large corporation, perhaps a local landlord) who exploits them for their cheap labor?”
And then, “Do I want to buy something that’s been made by a person who is being exploited?”
Because, after all, spending your hard-earned dollars on something is the best way to show your approval for where that product came from.
So why not seek out products that come from a positive background? By shopping local and buying Fair Trade, you can support entrepreneurs from your community and artisans from developing countries who hand-make so many of the things you use every day- from your coffee mug and cereal bowl in the morning, to the jewelry you put on before you leave the house, to the messenger bag you sling over your shoulder for the bike ride to work… well, you get the picture.
Many of the things you purchase and use every day can either make you feel guilty, or can make you feel good. And you deserve to feel good.
Urban Bazaar is doing its part to support Fair Trade and local artisans. We’re here to provide you with a fun place to shop for eclectic accessories and home decor items that you can be proud to say come from a positive background, and where every purchase goes to support artisans locally and around the world.