Fair Trade Highlights from 2010
2010 was a big year for Fair Trade USA and the 1.2 million farmers and workers that make up the global Fair Trade network. Thanks to your commitment and support, Fair Trade grew significantly in the United States and around the world. Check out these highlights: Early in 2010 Ben & Jerry’s announced a commitment to go 100% Fair Trade with all possible ingredients. Globally, this is a huge commitment that involves converting up to 121 different chunks and swirls, working across eleven different ingredients such as cocoa, banana, vanilla and other flavorings, fruits and nuts. It also means working with Fair Trade co-ops that total a combined membership of over 24,000 farmers. Sweet! Around the same time, we got another big 100% announcement from Green & Blacks: The chocolate company is going to convert it's entire line of delicious bars. You'll start seeing the Fair Trade Certified logo on all Green & Black's bars within the next few months. In April we conducted social media training for coffee producers from Brazil, Tanzania, Rwanda, Ethiopia and Kenya, helping them harness the power of Facebook, Twitter, and other outlets to attract new customers and tell their stories to the world. In May, Fair Trade USA celebrated World Fair Trade Day by hosting San Francisco’s first ever Fair Trade Wine Night. More than 400 people celebrated by visiting select wine bars across the city and ordering a glass (or two) of Fair Trade Certified wine. Also in 2010, we toasted to the launch of FAIR. in the United States. It is the very first line of spirits made with Fair Trade Certified ingredients (quinoa, coffee and sugar), and all three beverages have been celebrated by bartenders and bar-goers alike. In the summer, after five years of hard work by UC San Diego students, the university implemented a Fair Trade policy. Thanks to petition signing, documentary movie screenings, meetings with administrators and by the student government, UCSD now has the strongest Fair Trade policy of any university in the country! In the world of coffee, Fair Trade is helping Aceh, Indonesia rebuild after the devastating tsunami in 2004 and years of civil war. In 2010, Fair Trade USA raised money to create a pre-harvest financing program for the Fair Trade Certified coffee farmers in Aceh. Throughout the year, our staff has been working hard in Haiti to make sure Fair Trade CertifiedTM mango cooperative members have the information and tools they need to stay in the Fair Trade network. With your help Fair Trade Month 2010 last October was the biggest and best ever! More than 250 Fair Trade events took place around the country, and over 100 pledges were made by passionate advocates to start new Fair Trade Town campaigns. In honor of Fair Trade Month, Green Mountain Coffee made two of it's top-selling coffee blends Fair Trade Certified. Now you can find the label on Green Mountain's Our Blend and Vermont Country Blend. And then came one more 100% announcement: In Fair Trade Month, Honest Tea announced its plans to make 100% of its tea offerings Fair Trade Certified. Fair Trade USA launched its Fair Trade Certified apparel and linens program, creating sustainable livelihoods for factory workers and cotton farmers in India, Costa Rica, Liberia, Peru, and beyond! And finally, Fair Trade USA worked with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), Walmart and Sebrais-MG to conclude the Responsible Sourcing Partnership Project, a three-year program to help coffee farmers in Brazil maximize the benefits of Fair Trade certification. The project was designed to expand and improve the quality of the Brazilian Fair Trade Certified coffee supply though investments in infrastructure, technical assistance with production and post-harvest processing, as well as training in coffee quality management. We are impressed with the results of the project and excited for what's to come from these Brazilian farmers in 2011!