Fair trade, fair deals for La Mesa consumers

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La Mesa Fair Trade Steering Committee.jpg

     LA MESA ­— There are fair trade towns throughout the U.S. and Europe. A steering committee is at work to bring awareness to La Mesa residents and merchants of how the sale and use of Fair Trade certified products can bring about self-sufficiency for those who live in poverty.

Fair Trade creates trading relationships with growers and artisans in developing countries that guarantee equity, fair wages, healthy and safe working conditions, and environmentally sustainable practices.

     LA MESA ­— There are fair trade towns throughout the U.S. and Europe. A steering committee is at work to bring awareness to La Mesa residents and merchants of how the sale and use of Fair Trade certified products can bring about self-sufficiency for those who live in poverty.

Fair Trade creates trading relationships with growers and artisans in developing countries that guarantee equity, fair wages, healthy and safe working conditions, and environmentally sustainable practices.

For a product to be fair trade certified, growers and artisans must meet certain standards in the production process which include protecting the environment, building economic sustainability, and providing opportunities for education and health care for families.
The fair trade movement seeks to make a difference simply through consumer choices. It is not about giving foreign aid but instead helping the marginalized to better their lives by purchasing products that have been traded fairly. It is sometimes referred to as “commerce with a conscience”.

There is an assurance, when purchasing products that are labeled Fair Trade Certified, that they are of the finest quality and reasonably priced. There is a wide variety of these products available such as coffee, tea, wine, chocolate, sugar, ice cream, olive oil, fruit, spices, home décor, jewelry, clothing, clothing accessories, flowers, baskets and many hand-made
craft and novelty items.

To qualify for an official designation as a “Fair Trade Town” a certain number of merchants in the city must carry the certified products and consumers need to be made aware of the benefits that result when those products are purchased. In addition, a number of organizations and institutions should agree to serve fair trade beverages at their events.