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Breaking down fair trade and its importance

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When shopping for items around your home, it’s very easy to feel overwhelmed. Which store has the better deals, product offerings and availability? Then there are sipping costs (if shopping online), taxes to consider and – well you get the picture. By the way, did you notice there was no mention about where products come from or how they are made?

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The practice of fair trade is something that began many decades ago and continues to have a lasting impact. Finding its roots in the 1940′s, fair trade agreements work to establish partnerships with communities in developing countries to promote business opportunities that yield sustainability and self-sufficiency.

So what exactly does this mean for us? It means we get access to artisan items from around the globe and those communities in return are not only able to reach more potential clientele, but also have access to better economic opportunities. Many of these businesses also empower sustainable stewardship practices that utilize natural resources (a double win). Other positive results include:

  • The development of producer’s independence
  • Prompt and equal distribution of payment
  • Children’s rights
  • and more

(information via the Fair Trade Federation)

It’s simple changes to our spending that can make lasting impacts and (hopefully) life-long relationships. So to wet your appetite for home goods, here are some pieces that caught my eye. Did I mention they are fair trade?

1.) Vintage Kantha Throw Blanket – Peacock Pinwheel, Connected Fair Trade 2.) Petal T Light Holder, nkuku 3.) Kelim Cushions, Plumo 4.) Dome Lantern, SERRV 5.) Elephant Pillow, Forma Living 6.) Daha Ceramic Knob, Greenheart 7.) Fair Trade Handmade Ceramic Bee Tea Cup Set, Connected Fair Trade 8.) Eva Hand Painted Jug, nkuku

Fair Trade Shopping Tips

  • Check fair trade organization for a list of vendor/merchant resources for you to shop
  • Ask your favorite home furnishing store if they have any relationships with countries (and participate in fair trade). Many are starting to participate in different programs that work with artisans around the world

Fair Trade Organizations and Resources

  • Fair Trade Federation – website
  • Fair Trade U.S.A. – website
  • World Fair Trade Organization – website

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