Why Fair Trade?

Source: FAIRTRADE Australia

Fairtrade supports marginalised farmers and workers, enabling them to build a better and more secure life for themselves, their co-workers and their families.

 

Fairtrade is about creating a real, positive difference in people’s lives, from the farmers and workers growing crops and producing raw materials, right through the supply chain to the place where you buy the end product.

What is this difference we speak of? Well, we’re glad you asked!

In 2014 the purchase of Fairtrade products by people like you, together with the support of businesses working with Fairtrade, made all sorts of change possible…

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Making a difference – economically

Because it guarantees a Minimum Price for what they farm, Fairtrade is helping growers of cocoa, coffee, tea and other crops, to have more financial security – making them less vulnerable to poverty. In many cases, Fairtrade certification enables farmers to negotiate a higher price for their product than the conventional market price.

Additional income earned through the Fairtrade Premium is often used to support better farming practices to improve crops and soil. It enables farmers to invest in strengthening their businesses, improving their local communities and to plan for the future.

Making a difference – socially

Investment of the Fairtrade Premium in community development projects like improved health facilities, access to education for children and adults, and sources of clean drinking water and adequate sanitation, is improving the quality of lives of people in rural communities. This, combined with support in deepening gender equality sees farmers and workers who choose to participate in Fairtrade feel a real sense of control over their future, with greater power and voice.

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Making a difference – to the environment

Fairtrade provides real support to farmers and workers so that the environment can be protected. We help farmers adapt to the world’s changing climate, supporting long-term and positive ways of dealing with unpredictable weather patterns.  Fairtrade Standards also regulate substances used in farming, including pesticides and other chemicals. Waste management is another vital concern in an all-round mission to care for the natural world.

Fairtrade is essential to our organisation as our values include taking care of our people, being good neighbours, and fostering ethical business relationships. We only sell products which provide environmental, social and economic benefits while protecting public health and environment over their whole life cycle, from the extraction of raw materials until the final disposal.

If you would like to know more about our FairTrade policies, please visit us in store to chat to one our our knowledgeable team members, or call our Customer Service team on 123-456-7890.

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Handmade Easter Toys

Easter is just around the corner, and thankfully these gorgeous handmade toys have arrived from our suppliers all over the world just in time.

The next time you visit us in store take a look at these gorgeous handmade toys. Each is unique as it has been carefully and lovingly made by small business owners.

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These small soft chicken toys are perfect to pop into a basket of eggs! They have been hand crafted by a beautiful mother of 3 from Sorsogon in the Philippines.

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In Rajasthan, India, a small factory of workers are working hard to create beautiful toys for your children. A range of Easter Bunnies just like the one above are now in store at Ethical Trading Group for a perfect Easter surprise. They come in a variety of colours as well, ranging from a variety of browns, to bright pinks, purples and blues.

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Who came first? The chicken or the chocolate egg?
Tucked away in the backstreets of Lusaka, Zambia, a small group of women are hand making this gorgeous chickens just in time for Easter.

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Did someone mention finger puppets? These cute Chicken puppets have come all the way from Madagascar to entertain your little ones. They’re egg-cellent!

 

As always, we work closely with our suppliers to support local communities around the world. We are committed to paying sustainable prices, addressing the injustices of conventional trade, which traditionally discriminates against the poorest, weakest producers. This enables suppliers to improve their position and have more control over their lives.

We provide training and free health care to our suppliers and their staff. We work with our suppliers to ensure decent working conditions, local sustainability, and fair terms of trade for workers in the developing world.

Purchase with confidence that our handmade toys are child and environmentally friendly – will all this in mind, you can feel great about your purchases this Easter.

To see our full range, drop into one of our stores!

 

Top 10 Frequently Asked Questions

Here at Ethical Trading Group, we get a lot of questions from our customers! Here are the top 10 questions we get regularly to help you learn more about our brand;
  1. Where are you located?
    We have stores in all capital cities of Australia. Our head office is located in Sydney, NSW.
  2. Do you own the factories that your products come from?
    Like many retail and wholesale businesses, we do not own the factories that make our products. We work with selected suppliers, many of which are long term, and support 700,000 workers across three continents. We take our responsibility to the workers in the factories, their communities, our customers, and our stakeholders seriously. We only select products which are made with respect for the environment, in good working conditions, and are sustainable.

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  3. Where do I buy your products?
    You can purchase our products in person at one of our retail stores. We also wholesale to other retailers. If you would like to find a stockist near you, please call our customer service department on 123-456-7890.
  4. Can I buy your products online?
    Unfortunately no. Right now, we like to have an in person approach to sales of our products. This allows our knowledgeable staff to give you the back story of each product you purchase and creates a more personal experience for both our staff and customers.
  5. Are your products environmentally friendly?
    All of our products are stringently monitored to ensure that they are safe for the environment and manufactured using processes which comply with the highest environmental standards.

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  6. What products do you sell?
    At the moment we currently sell recycled homewares, handmade toys, lavender bags, organic coffee beans, prickly pear seed oil, handbags from India, and Christmas Hampers. We will soon be stocking Australian Bush Foods as well. Check back for updates.
  7. How do I know your brand is ethical?
    Our organisation is committed to the highest standards of conduct and ethical behaviour in all of our business activities, and to promoting and supporting a culture of honest and ethical behaviour, corporate compliance and good corporate governance.

    We have a “Whistle-blower Policy” to encourage employees, suppliers, contractors, tenderers or any person who has business dealings with our organisation (‘Relevant Persons’) to raise any concerns and report instances of unethical, illegal, fraudulent or undesirable conduct, where there are reasonable grounds to suspect such conduct, without fear of intimidation, disadvantage or reprisal.

  8. Can I sell your products in my store?
    We would absolutely love to have our products in your store. We do however, have a strict wholesale policy to ensure that our products are being sold in stores that align well with our brand objectives.

    A new wholesale customer must support our business with good credit quality and be reputable organisations with good standing in their local communities. For each new wholesale customer, the following information must be collected prior to agreeing to services.

    For more details and a copy of our customer review checklist please email wholesale@ethicaltrading.biz

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  9. What is your returns policy?
    It is of upmost importance to us that you leave our stores happy with your purchase. We accept returns with no questions asked within 7 days as long as the product is undamaged in it’s original packaging.

    Please remember that most of our products are handmade, so it is important to note that there may be slight variances in colour or size – this is what makes our products so special!

  10. I would like to talk to a person about your company or a product I’ve purchased. Who can I contact?
    We would love to hear from you! You can talk to one of our customer service representatives Monday to Friday from 9am – 5pm AEST on 123-456-7890 or you can send us an email to customerservice@ethicaltrading.biz

If you have another question for us that’s not listed here please send us an email to customerservice@ethicaltrading.biz and our knowledgable customer service team will get back to you as soon as they can!

An unfair climate

By Sumnima Dewan
Originally posted on: Green Lifestyle

How those communities that are contributing the least to climate change are suffering the greatest impacts from it.

Imagine with me that you are being placed in a life-threatening situation, and it is not your doing. It’s because of the action of your wealthy neighbours who are not going to have the same devastating impact as you. Seem fair? I don’t think so either…

Now, take a moment with me to realise that so many of the poorest communities in the world are suffering because of the actions of the richest nations. While Australia is feeling the effects of climate change, it’s the people in developing countries who are bearing the brunt of it. Seem fair? I don’t think so either…

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Like so many island nations, The Republic of Kiribati is among the most vulnerable places to climate change. It is a very tiny island, covering 810 square kilometres, and it’s also one of the lowest-lying Pacific Island states; just 2–3 metres above the sea level. The sea, which has sustained the country for generations, is now the source of its destruction.

Rising sea levels are not the only concern, as Kiribati Climate Advocate, Maria Tiimon Chi-Fang says: “The situation in Kiribati is dangerous… many i-Kiribati [Kiribati inhabitants] have problem with water coming from underneath the soil that destroys plantations – different weather patterns, strong storms from different directions, soil erosion and longer droughts adds to their struggle to live.”

According to the World Bank report, Kiribati’s capital of Tarawa, where nearly half the population lives, will be 25–54% inundated in the South and 55–80% in the North by 2050 due to sea level rise, poisoning of groundwater, destruction of arable land and spread of disease.

“The people of Kiribati contribute very little to climate change, yet experience the greatest impact of climate change,” Tiimon Chi-Fang said. “I strongly feel it is unjust.”

The latest report of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report warns greenhouse gas levels are at their highest they have been in 800,000 years, with recent increases mostly due to the burning of fossil fuels. The report found the Earth is headed towards at least 4°C warming by 2100, much higher than the 2°C goal world government set in 2009. It suggests renewables have to grow from their current 30% share to 80% of the power sector by 2050.

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“Australia can move to 100% renewable energy in 10 years with the political will to do so,” says CEO of Beyond Zero Emissions, Dr Stephen Bygrave, who has worked on climate change for 20 years, across renewable energy, energy efficiency, transport, agriculture and forestry. “Our research shows that there are a number of renewable technologies that will enable power generation 24-hours a day.”

The key technologies are Concentrated Solar Thermal to use solar energy and Pumped Storage Hydro to pump seawater with wind turbines to generate power. Bygrave says, “All the other inhabitant continents are adopting such technologies except Australia.”

Australia has the highest average solar irradiation of any continent. It’s Australia’s largest energy resource but most of its solar energy is where most Australians are not.

Despite, Tony Abbott’s insistence that the focus of discussion should be on economic reform, US President Barack Obama placed climate change at the forefront of the G20 summit that was held in Brisbane late last year. Obama announced a $3 billion contribution to the Green Climate Fund, urging other nations to also tackle the global warming problem.

As a global community, it’s also important that we pay careful attention to what will actually happen to people that are going to be (or already have been) displaced. Scott Leckie, Director of global NGO, Displacement Solutions, made the implications of this broader problem clear on his new book – Land Solutions to Solve Climate Change Displacement.

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“The Australian Government has no policy at all on land resources affected by climate change, and despite being the developed country geographically closest to more frontline states already grappling with climate displacement – has done nothing to assist them,” Leckie said.

According to The UN Refugee Agency, the UNHCR, the global scale of climate displacement is higher now than at any time since the end of World War II.

“For countries like Kiribati and range of other countries in the Pacific; it is almost impossible to envision the country whereby they look the same as they do now in 100 years and there is very little place for people to go internally.”

Mr Leckie added: “For vast majority of people who will be displaced, there are domestic national solutions available – finding land or resources for particular communities that are forced to flee by having policies and laws that match the needs of people concerned.”

The book estimates that anywhere between 12.5 million to 50 million acres of land would be a reasonable estimate of the physical amount of land that would be required to provide various land-based solutions to the world’s climate displaced population.

These are the facts. Do they seem fair? … I don’t think so either.