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Bethany McGinnis

Go from zero to a fair trade sale in 5 steps

Selling fairly traded coffee, tea, chocolate, cocoa and snacks to your community is a way to give them an opportunity to buy high-quality, fairly traded gifts for the holidays and add some additional income for your group. You don’t need to wait until next year, there’s still time to have one this season!  Here’s how to make a successful sale happen in 5 easy steps.

an array of fair trade and organic tea, cocoa, olive oil, almonds and coffee

  1. Choose your products

    Here are our gifitiest and best-selling products

If you’re wondering about kind of quantities to order for your crowd size, here are some recommendations>>

 

  1. Order your way

    Shop online and get wholesale case pricing, or call in your order to our Customer Service Team at 774-776-7366 M-F 9-5 EST. We recommend leaving 10 business days for your order to arrive, but check with our team for a personalized shipping estimate. We also offer expedited shipping if you’d like to have things arrive more quickly.

  2. Dress up your table

    Use a festive tablecloth and a string of lights or greenery to make it eye-catching. Organize products neatly and re-purpose shipping boxes turned upside down under a tablecloth to create vertical space to showcase products. Order our table signs, posters, olive oil gift tags and brochures to share information and draw people in. We even offer authentic and inexpensive burlap coffee bags to display.

    a display of fair trade chocolate chips, cocoa and chocolate bars on a table

  3. Set the right prices

    You can raise funds for special  projects, trips or activities by marking up your products 25% to 40% of your wholesale unit cost. Round up to the nearest dollar to help cover your costs and make giving change easier.  Examples of reasonable prices are: $8 for 12oz bags of coffee, $10 for 1lb bags of coffee, $4 for chocolate bars, $5 for tea, $15 for olive oil and $7 for cocoa. Remember to tell folks what you’re raising money for — they’ll love being able to gift shop and help your cause! Sell multiple items at slightly reduced prices to help encourage more sales. An assortment of chocolate bars tied with a ribbon makes a beautiful, decadent but affordable gift!

 

  1. Promote your sale and share the mission

    You know that fair trade is important for our global community, and now is a great time to tell shoppers why it matters. Edit these Customizable bulletin inserts and e-bulletins/newsletters to promote your sale at services or in an email blast. 

Try this example wording: “Give gifts that give more! Join us for our Holiday Sale [insert date, time and location] Give fairly traded, organic gifts this holiday season. Equal Exchange products are sourced from small-scale coffee, tea, cocoa and olive oil farmer co-operatives worldwide and profits from our sale go towards [insert your group, committee or reason for the sale here]. Through Fair Trade, farmers are better able to support their families, protect the environment and strengthen their communities.”  

poster on a door that says "we support small farmers" and "Sale today"

Put up these free posters announcing the sale. The meaning behind the products you sell will really set them apart – so don’t be afraid to talk about it! Our talking points and brochures also help make it easy!

Personalize your fair trade gifts!

Wicker gift basket with green tea, coffee, chocolate bars and pecansConsumable gifts like coffee, tea and chocolate are wonderful because they won’t collect dust on a shelf, will likely not get re-gifted and are perfect for that person who says they “don’t need anything”. What’s more, Equal Exchange products are organic and ethically sourced, so your gift says something meaningful about your values, too. And they aren’t just for Christmas, Hanukkah, or Kwanzaa – these gifts are great year-round!

And good news…Equal Exchange has opened up wholesale case pricing to everyone A case means six packages of coffee, six boxes of tea, six canisters of cocoa or 12 bars of chocolate. Take advantage of amazing pricing on organic and fairly traded products by splitting cases up and making tasty, personalized gift baskets for those you love!

Personalized gift ideas

Packages of Palestinian maftoul, freekeh, dates and olive oil

 

Who are your favorite foodies? Gift them with some of our newest products from the Middle East. They’re not easily found in the US and they support small-scale Palestinian farmers. Succulent Medjool dates, hearty couscous (maftoul) and smokey freekeh (along with recipes showing how to use them) make memorable, quality presents! 

If you’d prefer to give a gift that’s boxed already, we also have a Palestinian Farmers’ Box that comes with 4 products from the West Bank.

a bowl of chocolate chip cookie mix in a bowl with Equal Exchange chocolate chips next to it

 

Know people who like to bake? Imagine giving them “Bakers’ Baskets” filled with organic pantry staples like Equal Exchange baking cocoa, bittersweet chocolate chips and virgin olive oil. Maybe they’ll even bake something for you as a thank you!

 

 

 

Gift basket with 3 women-themed fair trade coffees insideMothers, sisters and women who appreciate good coffee and social justice will delight in beautifully packaged bags of  Mama Tierra , Sisters Blend and Congo Coffee Project . Each tells a story and celebrates women. Gift them individually or as a trio! 5 coffee trios each with 3lbs of coffee for under $27 is pretty awesome! In addition to being fairly traded and organic Mama Tierra and Congo Coffee both have an extra bonus – a built-in donation for community development work in Oaxaca, Mexico and the Panzi Hospital in the DR Congo. 

 

a young girl holds a gift basket full of fair trade goodies like almonds, tea, and coffee with a sticker that says "power to the farmers".Our most popular products to mix and match

  • Love Buzz Coffee
  • Breakfast Blend Coffee
  • Peppermint Tea
  • Green Tea
  • Dark Hot Chocolate
  • Hot Cocoa Mix
  • Baking Cocoa
  • Panama Extra Dark Chocolate
  • Dark Chocolate with Mint Crunch
  • Pecans
  • Virgin Olive Oil

 

bite sized chocolate minis packaged in small cellophane bags for gifts

Another one of our favorite ideas for affordable gifts for your neighbors, kids’ teachers, or mail person is bite-sized chocolate minis in gift bags you assemble yourself. Buying in bulk gives you the best price.

How to Order:

  • Decide which products you want to order
  •  Buy them by the case – On our webstore: Select the case quantity in the unit of measure and add them to your cart. You can also order by phone at 774-776-7366 M-F 9-5 eastern time. You get free shipping on orders of $75 or more. Give yourself at least 10 business days between ordering and expecting your delivery during our busiest shipping time of the year.

Questions? 

Call customer service at 774-776-7366 M-F 9-5 EST or email communityorders@equalexchange.coop

Choose the Right Products for Your Table Sale

Hosting a table sale, holiday bazaar or alternative gift market is a great way to introduce your community to ethically-sourced products or make a little money for your cause. Whether this is your first time planning one, or you’ve been doing it for years, here are some guidelines to take the guesswork out of ordering.

Use our wholesale case product guide to see case quantities and pricing. If you’re wondering how much your group could earn by marking up the products just a small amount, we’ve done the math for you.

Some groups want to keep prices as low as possible for their shoppers. They divide the cost of the wholesale case by the number of items in it, and then round up to the nearest dollar. Others mark the products up a little bit more, closer to what you might see in a retail store. Either way, small-scale farmers benefit!

We recommend ordering these tasty and gifty items below*. Use this handy shopping guide to shop these best-selling products in one collection.

Expecting a crowd of about 100-150 people? packages of fair trade, organic coffee for sale

  • 6 cases of coffee: Sisters’ Blend, Mama Tierra, Congo (whole bean), Breakfast Blend, French Roast and Decaf
  • 6 case of chocolate bars: Dark Chocolate with Mint, Coconut Milk Chocolate or plain Milk Chocolate, Dark Chocolate Caramel Crunch with Sea Salt, 71% Very Dark, Dark chocolate with Orange, Dark Chocolate with Lemon, Ginger, Pepper
  • 4 cases of tea: English Breakfast, Peppermint, Green, Rooibos
  • 2 cases Palestinian Olive Oil
  • 3 cases Hot Cocoa Mix 

If you only marked the products up from wholesale case price by rounding up to the nearest dollar, you would make $103 but you can choose to mark them up to whatever price point you think they’ll sell at, depending on if your goals are to raise money for your organization. Examples of reasonable prices are: $8 for 12oz bags of coffee, $10 for 1lb bags of coffee, $4 for chocolate bars, $5 for tea, $15 for olive oil and $7 for cocoa. Using these prices you would profit $258 for your cause! That could pay for your fair trade, organic coffee hour, if you aren’t already serving Equal Exchange coffee regularly.

Want more variety? Consider ordering baking cocoa, nuts, and chocolate chips.

Expecting between 150-300 people?organic and fairly traded chocolate bars for sale

  • 8 cases of coffee: Sisters’ Blend, Mama Tierra, 2c Congo (whole bean), 2c Breakfast Blend, French Roast and Decaf
  • 8 cases of chocolate bars: Dark Chocolate with Mint, Coconut Milk Chocolate or plain Milk Chocolate, Dark Chocolate Caramel Crunch with Sea Salt, 71% Very Dark, Dark Chocolate with Orange, Dark Chocolate with Almonds, Dark Chocolate with Lemon, Ginger & Pepper, Panama 80% Extra Dark Chocolate
  • 5 cases of tea: English Breakfast, Peppermint, Green, Rooibos, & Ginger
  • 3 cases Palestinian Olive Oil
  • 3 cases Hot Cocoa Mix 
  • 2 cases Dark Hot Chocolate Mix

If you only marked up the products from wholesale case price by rounding up to the nearest dollar, you would make $175. If you use a slightly larger mark up ($8 for 12oz bags of coffee, $10 for 1lb bags of coffee, $4 for chocolate bars, $5 for tea, $15 for olive oil and $7 for cocoa) your group would profit $390.

Possible add-ons include baking cocoa, nuts and chocolate chips. You might also offer empty baskets or bows for a small fee.

Expecting between 300-450 people?gift basket including fair trade, organic goodies

  • 10 cases of coffee: 2c Sisters’ Blend, 2c Mama Tierra, 2c Congo (whole bean), 2c Breakfast Blend, 1c French Roast & 1c Decaf
  • 12 cases of chocolate bars: 2c Dark Chocolate with Mint, 2c Coconut Milk Chocolate or Milk Chocolate, 2c Dark Chocolate Caramel Crunch with Sea Salt, 2c 71% Very Dark, Dark chocolate with Orange, 2c Dark Chocolate with Almonds, 2c Dark Chocolate Lemon, Ginger, Black Pepper
  • 8 cases of tea: 2c English Breakfast, 2c Peppermint, 1c Green, 1c Rooibos, 1c Chai, & 1c Ginger
  • 4 cases  Palestinian Olive Oil
  • 3 cases Hot Cocoa Mix 
  • 2 cases Dark Hot Chocolate Mix
  • 1 case Baking Cocoa

If you marked up the products from wholesale case price by rounding up to the nearest dollar, you would make $204. Using a slightly larger mark up ($8 for 12oz bags of coffee, $10 for 1lb bags of coffee, $4 for chocolate bars, $5 for tea, $15 for olive oil and $7 for cocoa) your group would profit $508.40. What could you do with an extra $500?

For more variety and a larger impact on small-scale producers, consider adding nuts, chocolate chips or some beautiful fair trade craft items from Ten Thousand Villages.

 

Ready to order? Purchase on our webstore or call our friendly customer service team at 774-776-7366 (9-5 eastern time Monday through Friday) to order. You get the wholesale prices as long as you select the case pack quantity as your unit of measure. We recommend leaving at least 10 business days between the time you order and when you can expect delivery of your Equal Exchange goodies!

Don’t forget to order these free promotional & display tools for your sale:display of a sale table featuring fair trade, organic products from Equal Exchange

Holiday sale poster

Chocolate and tea display rack

Assorted Brochures

Olive Oil Gift tags

Mission-focused posters

Talking points table sign

Customizable bulletin inserts and e-bulletins/newsletters to promote your sale

Looking for even more tips and tricks for successful holiday sales?

Get tips on how to festively dress up your table on a budget, make gift baskets and ready-to-give gifts>>

See our full list of educational and promotional items here >>

*Please note: It’s impossible to know exactly how much people will buy from your sale, therefore these are only suggestions. Because they are consumable products, we can not offer them on consignment. We strongly encourage you to to purchase only what you are confident you can sell through during your event.

Encourage a switch to Equal Exchange

Fair trade. Ethically sourced. Organic. Sustainable. You’ve been hearing the buzzwords and want to do right by the small-scale farmers who produce your food. You support caring for our planet. You want to contribute to an independent and transparent food system. Now… how do you get others to understand the issues and take action towards food justice? We’ve collected our best tips so you can be successful at encouraging a switch to Equal Exchange for your coffee hour, office, fundraiser, event and beyond.

How to introduce the idea of fair trade to your group

You can plan a short presentation using a combination of talking points and videos. Having some coffee or chocolate on hand for folks to taste will help them see how delicious the products are, in addition to the good they’re doing in the world! If a presentation sounds too formal, just have a conversation with someone who is a decision-maker in your group or send them some of the info below in an email while explaining why fair trade is important to you.

Brush up on your fair trade knowledgeComic book with title "The History of Authentic Fair Trade"

Know the Equal Exchange basics

A smiling man poses with green cacao pods.Show the positive impact on farmers

Learn from others

A red bag of organic fair trade coffeeWhy switch your coffee?

These resources answer common questions and show why Equal Exchange coffee is special.

Why does fair trade chocolate matter?Fair trade chocolate bars from equal exchange

Big name chocolate companies were recently called out in the Washington Post for unethical sourcing and child slave labor in the chocolate industry. Be sure you’re not supporting injustices you don’t believe in.

 

Two students are at a school computer that shows fair trade chocolate on the screen.Want more?

Explore all of our educational materials>>

Browse educational materials tailored towards youth>>

Questions?

If you still have questions, contact our Massachusetts-based customer service team at 774-776-7366, 9-5 Monday-Friday for personalized assistance.

Fair Trade Sales at Monona United Methodist Church

We’re turning the spotlight on longtime Equal Exchange supporters Monona United Methodist Church in Monona, Wisconsin!

Their congregation has been buying fair trade products through the UMCOR Coffee Project since 2003. They are what we call “top customers” because they’re in the top 5% of faith-based groups who buy from Equal Exchange and re-sell to their members.Women from Monona United Methodist Church hold up a certificate honoring their church for being fair traders

“As a congregation Monona United Methodist definitely comes through for the small farmer coops worldwide.  Our United Methodist Women’s purpose in this Mission is to sell as much as we can to help small farmers have a stable and reliable marketplace as they do with Equal Exchange. In 2018 our sales placed us #23 out of 7,600 US interdenominational congregations who participate in Equal Exchange’s faith-based program.
We sell monthly and also have a display area up all the time with a container for payment on the honor system. Sales generate $200-300 each month.  We are a reconciling church and this is a Mission we all unite together on! When we presented our “Top Customer” certificate to the congregation at church everyone received an Equal Exchange mini chocolate bar as a thank you. Our team of 10 volunteers finds it a JOY to participate in this Mission of Justice, Equality and Sustainability for these small farmer coops and enjoy their excellent products.” -Kay Mackie: Team Coordinator (right) pictured with Patsy McDonald

Sign up here to learn more about how you can bring Equal Exchange products to your community

To be featured in the Congregation Spotlight, please send a few paragraphs about how your congregation uses Equal Exchange products to promote justice.

Congregation Spotlight: Grandview United Methodist

Dorothy Killebrew is a member of  Grandview United Methodist Church in Lancaster, PA, one of Equal Exchange’s top faith based customers. Here is Dorothy‘s description of how her congregation connects with fair trade and social justice:

“Ours is a growing church with an average attendance about 250 members, with new members joining all of the time. This is because we’re an open and affirming Reconciling Congregation which makes people feel comfortable and safe. And whenever a new member joins we give them a gift of an Equal Exchange product whether it’s a box of tea, a bag of coffee, or a can of cocoa.  

We make it easy for people to access and purchase the Equal Exchange products throughout the week; they‘re available in a heavily-trafficked room where neighbors come to drop their kids off for Scouts or to participate in exercise classes. We also don’t seek to make a profit; we don’t use the products as a fundraiser. And we occasionally do things like Sunday school lessons and announcements to educate people about fair trade and the people it affects.

We also sell Equal Exchange products through an honor system where people can take the products they need and leave a check. Finally, as a member of a clergy choir in Central PA, I bring products once a month to display at every choir concert. What this means is that by May this year I will have taken a display to 26 different churches. My clergy colleagues always buy; but those attending the concert often purchase as well!”

Keep up the amazing work, Dorothy and friends!

 

To be featured in the Congregation Spotlight, please send a few paragraphs about how your congregation uses Equal Exchange products to promote justice. Don’t forget to include some photos, the higher the resolution the better!

Learn more about how you can sell Equal Exchange products in your congregation or community here>>

Image shows samples of Equal Exchange coffee, chocolate and tea.

 

Almond Butter Cups

Offer a snack that is vegan, paleo, gluten-free … and tastes decadent! You and your family can enjoy while feeling good about the ingredients you used and knowing how they were sourced!

Three chocolate almond cups on a plate next to a bag of fair trade chocolate chips.
5 from 2 votes
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Almond Butter Cups

We like that these cups take very little time but fully satisfy your cravings for something chocolatey, sweet and crunchy. Plus, they’re made with organic, fairly traded ingredients!

Course Dessert, Snack
Keyword almond butter, Chocolate
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 12

Ingredients

Almond Butter Filling:

  • 1/2 cup almond butter (Make your own with Equal Exchange Almonds or use store-bought if you’re short on time.)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon organic maple syrup

Chocolate Mixture:

  • 10 oz. Organic Bittersweet Chocolate Chips
  • 2 tablespoons melted organic coconut oil (We like Dr. Bronner’s because it’s fairly traded and whole kernel which gives it a nuttier flavor!)

Garnish:

Instructions

  1. Add almond butter, vanilla extract and maple syrup to a bowl. Mix until smooth. Set aside.
  2. Place chocolate chips and coconut oil in a heatproof bowl. Set over a pot of boiling water (but not touching the water) and stir until melted.

  3. Place paper cupcake lines inside the cups of a muffin tin. Add a tablespoon of melted chocolate to each cupcake liner. Use a spoon to work the chocolate up the sides of the liner. Place the whole muffin tin in the freezer for five minutes, until the chocolate hardens.

  4. Remove tin from the freezer and place one scoop of the almond butter mixture in the center of each chocolate filled cupcake liner.

  5. Top each filled cupcake liner with remaining chocolate until the almond butter is completely covered. Place two whole almonds on the top of each almond butter cup.

  6. Place the cups in the freezer for five more minutes to firm up.

  7. Remove from the freezer and garnish the tops with coarse sea salt if you’d like.
  8. Note: It’s recommended to store the cups in an airtight container in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve them. The airtight container ensures that the chocolate doesn’t absorb any other food smells and flavors that are also in the fridge.

Recipe Notes

Recipe adapted from JoyfulHealthyEats.com

Sharing + Saving = Buying Club

Buying clubs offer you the opportunity to make a real difference for small farmers around the world while paying less for your favorite organic and Fair Trade foods.  Order together and get staples like coffee, tea, chocolate, olive oil and more at low wholesale case prices. We’ll ship orders of $75 or more for free.

We’re not talking about ordering a pallet’s worth of coffee!  Although we do offer some bulk products, most products come 6 or 12 items in a case.  And you’re still welcome to purchase individual items at retail pricing too.

Buying clubs not only make financial sense and build community, they also minimize your environmental impact.  They help you use less packaging and achieve a lower carbon footprint by consolidating shipments. Buying clubs are also ideal for folks who don’t live near a natural foods store or food coop and want access to affordable, high quality, ethically sourced products. Ordering together also means a unique opportunity to try-out new products at a lower price than if you had to buy something individually off of the shelf.

Follow these 5 steps for a thriving buying club:

1.Gather your group

Reach out to

  • Family or friends
  • Members of your gardening club, book club, or social justice group
  • Neighbors
  • Co-workers

Pro Tip: Host a coffee or chocolate tasting when you introduce the idea of the buying club. Not only will it make it easier for folks to decide what to order, but we’ve found that once people taste the quality, they are likely to want a regular supply! Use these key talking points to get people on board.

2. Get organized 

Once you have a group together, select a coordinator and a treasurer.

The coordinator:

  • Takes individual orders from members and collects them into one group order
  • Places your group’s order with Equal Exchange
  • Distributes products to members or sets a pick up time and location after the products are delivered

The treasurer:

  • Collects payment from members
  • Pays Equal Exchange within 14 days of each order
  • Loves numbers and is organized

 

3. Plan an order

  • Visit shop.equalexchange.coop to see our full product range. You’ll see price options for an individual item and the discounted cost per case. Buying clubs must purchase a full case of  a particular product to qualify for wholesale pricing, although you are still welcome to purchase individual items at retail pricing as part of your order.
  • For your first order, we suggest limiting the range of orderable items to some of Equal Exchange’s most popular products, but for a larger selection you can print out our colorful product and price list for each member so they can see how many items are in each case and what the cost per item would be if there are enough orders to fill a case. Requiring pre-payment, at least on your first order, is a good way to make sure that the members of your buying club are serious about participating responsibly.
  • Equal Exchange’s best sellers include:

    Pro tips: Ordering 5-pound bulk bags of coffee to share? Order our tin-tie bags for easy  labeling and distribution. If your buying club is small, consider requiring that members purchase products in full or half-case quantities to minimize leftovers.

     

    4. Place the Order

    Gather individual orders from club members. Use our order form, or create your own that includes only the products your group orders.

    Pro Tip:  Order $75 worth of products to qualify for free shipping.

    Then, place your master order:

    You’ll pay in full at the time of your order, but if your group is interested in paying an invoice after receiving the shipment, Equal Exchange allows Net 14 payment terms. To apply for credit terms you’ll need to have one order pre-paid with a credit card then fill out our form agreeing you will pay within 14 days of receiving your order. Contact Customer Service at 774-776-7366 to find out more.

    5. Distribute, Enjoy and Reorder

    When products arrive at the designated pick-up location, have a consistent system for distribution. Collect payment when people pick up their orders, if you do not require members to pre-pay. A payment app like Venmo is an easy system to use. Enjoy your good deals, your good food, and place another order when you have critical mass.

    Pro tips: Why not make the pick-up time a chance to enjoy each other’s company? You could hold a chocolate tasting or taste-test newer product releases. Equal Exchange offers a rewards program where you can earn “beans” to be redeemed for things like discounts!

    If folks tend to want the same products regularly, we’re soon going to debut a subscription order program so buying club members don’t always have to remember to re-order. It can arrive at monthly or on your own time-line.

    You can even expand your buying club to include sharing larger quantities of products from local farms. Imagine the feeling of knowing where almost all of your food comes from and the farmers behind the food!

     

    Not sure buying clubs are for you?

    Read why Edith Stacey-Huber, who runs a successful buying club, chose to start one. Maybe you have some of the same goals?

“The first buying club I started was in the early ‘90s. That club was started out of financial necessity, and as I look back, I was motivated by my view of a monopolized grocery system. There were very few stores, thus the lack of competition didn’t evoke any savings to the consumer. I was also looking for organic food, real food, and there were only two small health food stores in the city.

Since my relatives were farmers it wasn’t outside the box for me to seek out food from farms. Seeing the commitment of our local organic farmers to grow food the way they do, some for years, barely making it, but still staying committed to what they know is right–I couldn’t turn a blind eye to that. I found a small natural foods distributor, gathered a few friends and the first club was born.

Once I started procuring food this way, there was no turning back.  The club model has changed over the years with the obliteration of small distributors, and my deeper awareness of food justice and buying local, but I was always either a key member, treasurer, coordinator, or founder of a club.

Our current club model has taken bolder steps to remove ourselves completely from the commercial food system. Personally, our family has a direct connection to our food and I would say 80 percent of the food we eat, we know who grew it or the source it comes from.

I think consumers have the potential to hold all of the power, if we organize, become diligent in our efforts and become truly informed voters and active in spearheading the changes we want to see.”

  • Edith Stacey-Huber is passionate about food. She is the creator of the food buying club Authentic Provisions just outside of Ann Arbor, Mich. Authentic Provisions aims to reconnect people in the community to the food, land and farmers who sustain them, through collective purchasing outside of the corporate food system. Her quote above has been excerpted from a longer interview with Edith  on our blog from May 2017.

Inspiration for your Holiday Sale Display

We collected some of our favorite creative, yet simple display ideas for holiday sales during Christmas, Hanukkah and beyond!  Check out our Pinterest Board>> for even more ideas!

a table set up for a holiday sale with fair trade products

A sparkling, lighted display draws in shoppers, using wooden crates to add height and extra shelving. We also offer chocolate and tea racks for purchase. You can bring greenery and pine cones indoors for a gorgeous, natural and economical display. Burlap coffee bags make an eye-catching table cloth or backdrop that couldn’t be more relevant to the products you’re featuring! Order authentic burlap bags that were used to transport coffee beans to Equal Exchange for $2 each.

 

posters showing fair trade sales information

Order some free promotional materials like posters, pamphlets, stickers and comic books for your table. We recommend promoting your sale early to drum up excitement. Putting up our holiday sale poster with your event details and getting the word out using our e-newsletter template is a great way to do this. We’ve also created a shareable photo collection. Download holiday images to make your own promo materials.

 

Showcase Products in Ready-to Gift Ways

A gift basket full of baking goods from Equal Exchange

Pre-assemble gift baskets full of fairly traded goodies for people who want gifts to grab and go. Offer a variety of price points to fit many budgets.

 

Equal Exchange Palestinian Olive Oil dressed up with a gift tag and wrappingMove over, wine! A bottle of organic, fairly traded Palestinian Olive Oil makes a unique & meaningful gift.  Tea-towels or silk scarves from the thrift store make beautiful and reusable gift wrap.

Order free gift tags that can be attached to the bottles to give the gift recipients more information about this very special olive oil!

Chocolate minis in holiday packaging

 

 

Our chocolate minis packaging kit contains 35 acrylic bags that can be filled with 25 dark chocolate minis. Add holiday stickers and voila! We find that $8 a bag is a fair price that covers your costs with a bit extra left as profit.

 

 

chocolate minis spilling out of a holiday bag

Or, package milk or dark chocolate minis in small festive pouches and sell them for a set price. Recommend them to shoppers as the perfect “little something” for a teacher, mail-person or neighbor.

 

Sell Other Fair Trade Items that Coordinate with Equal Exchange Products 

Serving trays, coffee mugs, and cup cozies from the Fair Trade organization Ten Thousand Villages complement coffee, tea and cocoa and make perfect add-ons at your sale table. If you want to include more crafts at your sale, Ten Thousand Villages has an extensive selection of Fair Trade garlands, ornaments and nativities that can be purchased at discounted prices for groups who want to offer crafts for sale at events on consignment.

Attract Customers and Increase Sales 

a tray of chocolate samples next to a chocolate bar

Break up a chocolate bar into bite-sized pieces and offer samples of flavors people may not have tried, like our wildly popular Lemon, Ginger and Black Pepper,  Panama Extra Dark 80% or Milk Chocolate with Caramel Crunch and Sea Salt. They won’t be able to resist picking up a few bars for themselves as well as for gifts!

a mug of hot cocoaBrew up a carafe of coffee or hot cocoa for samples. Equal Exchange has airpot labels so folks know what they’re tasting and can buy it from your table. If samples aren’t in your budget, charge just enough to cover your costs (about $0.15 per cup on average ). You could even charge a little more and sell customized cups of cocoa as a fundraiser.

 

a table with bags of Equal Exchange coffee and a hand reaching for one

Our best seller, Organic Breakfast Blend, is the perfect coffee to feature at your sale. It’s not only most popular… it’s also our lowest-priced coffee! Your group can still make a profit by charging $7 a bag while offering a high-quality, fairly traded coffee. And buying Equal Exchange coffee helps small-scale farmers stay on their land, supports your own organization and members get delicious coffee at a great price. What shopper could pass that up?

 

 DIY Gift Ideas 

Fill tin-tie bags with whole bean coffee from bulk 5lb bags and decorate the bags with stickers.

Tie chocolate bars with ribbon and sell them as a bundle with a price incentive like 5 for $15.

a stack of Equal Exchange chocolate bars with ribbon

 

Try your hand at creating a bunch of “tea-trees” with green and peppermint tea bags for fun gifts that also double as display! Or pre-assemble the ingredients needed to make Fair Trade brownies or cookies in mason jars and include the recipe. a crafty holiday tree made of tea bags

 

Baking cocoa next to jars of baking ingredients

 

chocolate pecan pie

Love to bake?

Offer treats made with Equal Exchange products for sale. Browse recipes made with fairly traded, organic ingredients like chocolate caramel pecan pie!

 

Learn more: Holiday Sale Tips>> and ideas for making Fair Trade gift baskets >> 

Share your displays with us!

Tag @equalexchange on Facebook or Instagram  when you post your photos.

How to Talk about Fair Trade

Do you want to let people know why they should support Equal Exchange, a pioneer in the Fair Trade food and beverage industry in the United States? What  if people ask tough questions?  We’ve put together some talking points to help you explain why everyone should support authentic Fair Trade.

“I like my *insert non-Fair Trade brand product here*. Why should I switch to Equal Exchange?”

Fair Trade products from committed brands are better for farmers, better for the environment and better for ourselves. A small change, like choosing fairly traded, organic products has a real and meaningful impact in all three areas. If you want to promote social justice, environmental sustainability and fair trading relationships, buying from Equal Exchange is way to connect your values with your actions as a consumer without sacrificing taste or quality.

Introduce Equal Exchange with this 2 minute video: Who We Are and What We Believe In or put up  this colorful display sign in your office, school or place of worship to inspire others to make a change.

“Are Fair Trade products really that different from non-Fair Trade products?”

Fair Trade is a way of doing business that aims to keep small-scale farmers an active part of the world marketplace. It’s not charity – it’s a sustainable and alternative trading model that helps producers make a viable living and stay on their own land while advancing many economic, social and environmental goals. Long-term trading relationships mean income that farmers can count on, year after year. When you buy a fairly traded product from Equal Exchange you know that a stable price was paid to farmers, significantly higher than the fluctuating market price.

 By choosing Fair Trade products, you’re supporting a different kind of business model. One that is based on dignity and transparency. One without forced child labor that is not focused on profit-maximizing at the expense of others in the supply chain. Fair Trade premiums allow farming communities to decide collectively which development projects they want to use the money on, like improving access to clean water and education.  Small changes we as consumers can make regarding what we choose to buy make a real impact on the quality of the lives of producers and their families. Read a more about Fair Trade principles here.

“Do Fair Trade products cost more?”

Often Fair Trade products cost about as much as other organic and specialty-grade products of similar quality. At local farmers markets in the US, many people are willing to pay prices that reflect the hard work of small-scale farmers because they know the care that their community members put into the organic cultivation of food on their farms.  It makes sense that local farmers should make more than what it costs them to grow a product, so, the same concept should apply to products like coffee, cacao and tea that aren’t grown locally, right?

We believe a shift in perception of value needs to take place in the marketplace before Fair Trade products become the norm. Equal Exchange has been dedicated to creating an alternative trading model since 1986 and we are committed to continuing to build this movement. To help make fairly traded products affordable for everyone, we offer wholesale pricing to faith-based groups, non-profits, offices, buying clubs and schools so they can access high-quality and fairly traded products for serving and fundraising. Read more a more in-depth answer to this question here>>

“Where does the money I pay go?”

Traditional supply chains have many middle men that take a large percentage, but buying from Equal Exchange, who trades directly with small-scale farmer cooperatives, ensures that that more of the money you spend on coffee and our other products reaches the hardworking farmers who actually grow them.  In fact, by the time you purchase from Equal Exchange, the farmers have already been paid and received pre-harvest financing so they can pay for expenses when they need the money. A fairly traded product also means that the producer has received a guaranteed minimum price for their harvest, regardless of the highs and lows of the commodities market. When the market prices are low, the price a farmer gets for their coffee harvest often doesn’t even cover the cost of production. When the market price is high, Fair Trade premiums paid to farmers increase even higher.

Farmers in the Fair Trade system get additional premiums paid to their cooperatives because they farm organically. These premiums go towards projects that their communities choose to improve their social, economic and environmental conditions. Access to clean water, education, and healthcare are basic human rights we all deserve and Fair Trade purchases contribute directly toward that advancement.

“Where do the products come from and who grows them?”

At the heart of Equal Exchange’s story is our relationship with small farmers. We work directly with over 40 small farmer cooperatives in 25 countries in South American, Latin America, Africa, and Asia to bring you high quality, organic products grown with care by people who take pride in their harvests. There are a variety of videos to share as well as different educational resources, including cooperative profiles, on our website

“I see similar products with Fair Trade labels at stores. How is buying from Equal Exchange different?”

There’s a big difference! Equal Exchange has been fighting for market access for small-scale farmers from the moment we were founded. We’re a worker-owned cooperative whose mission is tied to building a just food system where consumers have choices and feel connected to the people in the supply chains. And Equal Exchange works only with other democratically-organized farmer groups. When you buy from one of the corporate big guys you might ask yourself these questions regarding whom you’re supporting.  Are 100% of the products they offer fairly traded? Are economic justice for producers and transparency for consumers among the top priorities for the CEO and shareholders?  Equal Exchange operates independently with a more democratic business model.

Another difference is quality and freshness! Did you know Equal Exchange expertly roasts our own organic coffee in Massachusetts daily with a team of quality control professionals? Each batch of coffee is “cupped” to make sure it meets the consistent and high quality standards we set for our coffees. We seal in the freshness on each package so it arrives directly from us to your door super fresh and delicious! Take a peek inside our roastery in this video.

And Equal Exchange partners with many relief, development and social justice organizations. Learn more about these partnerships here.

“What does Equal Exchange think about current controversies surrounding Fair Trade?”

We believe Fair Trade is one tool of many that are needed to build power and more equity for small-scale farmer cooperatives around the world.  The biggest problem from our vantage point has been the corporate takeover of Fair Trade.  Certifiers invited big players into a system designed for and by small farmers and permitted them to weaken it to meet their needs.  Equal Exchange continues to stay the course we initially charted to promote authentic Fair Trade that is in line with our mission.

“I’m committed to living a more Fair Trade lifestyle. What else can I do?”

There’s a great variety of choices in fairly traded and high quality apparel, body care, crafts and home goods and food from committed brands.  

And if you’re interested in going deeper on food justice issues we invite you to join Equal Exchange’s Action Forum.

 

Have other questions come up? We want to answer them! Post them right here in the comments or

Explore more Fair Trade FAQs from Equal Exchange >>

Read Fair Trade Fact sheet from the Fair World Project >>

 

Stay up-to-date with Fair Trade news by signing up for Equal Exchange’s biweekly newsletter.

By providing Equal Exchange with your email, you’re giving us permission to communicate with you electronically. Read our Privacy Policy for more details.

 

Pop-Up Fair Trade Stores on Campus

College campuses are full of change-makers and activists like you, making them the perfect locations for hosting successful Fair Trade sales. A pop-up store on campus can be a fundraising opportunity for departments and clubs, or just a great way to raise awareness about socially responsible consumerism.

Get inspired to host your own sale by two schools that recently hosted campus sales, Manhattan College and Bryant University.

Equal Exchange Coffee = Fair Trade Fuel!

At Manhattan College in New York, the School of Business teamed up with Campus Ministry and Social Action for a Fair Trade pop-up store on campus during Christmastime. Manhattan College was the first Fair Trade Certified College in New York City, which means they must carry a certain number of items in their cafeterias and in their bookstore that were produced by farmers and artisans who receive fair wages and can perform their duties in a safe working environment. Aileen Farrelly, assistant professor and assistant dean in the School of Business, said, “Fair Trade embodies our Lasallian values, is critical to the College’s mission, and using fair trade products to launch this project helped our students learn about all aspects of running a business.” The pop-up store was called Fair Trade Fuel and students were responsible for accounting and financing, marketing and publicity.  They sold chocolate, crafts, and clothing to their campus community over the course of three days. It was so successful that they held another sale around Valentine’s Day, selling Fair Trade chocolate and flowers. 

Social Change Marketplace. Photo courtesy of Bryant University.

Bryant University in Rhode Island is becoming known for their Social Change Marketplace, the first student-run program of its kind in the country. Local social enterprises are invited each year to participate as vendors selling their products on campus for a day in December. The pop-up holiday marketplace encourages conscious consumerism during the gift-giving season, and all products featured have a positive social impact. Companies each have their own table set up and talk with students about what makes their products special. Check out their market compilation video from 2017. The popularity of the Marketplace on campus inspired a corporate event at Fidelity Investments and the student organizers shared their successes at the Campus Compact National Conference where colleges and universities gather to build democracy through community development. 

Equal Exchange is an ideal partner for groups who are interested in hosting similar pop-up sales. We offer discounted wholesale pricing to organizations that want to sell organic coffee (in packages or freshly brewed at a coffee kiosk), tea, chocolate bars, olive oil and cocoa. You choose cases of what you want to sell, then mark up the products at prices that help you reach your fundraising goals or just covers your costs and promotes Fair Trade.  We can offer best selling product suggestions, pricing recommendations, and promotional materials to help make your sale a success. Our customer service team is available M-F 9-5 Eastern at 774-776-7366 to help.

Here are our top tips for planning a pop-up sale on campus:

1- Plan early: For a November or December sale, start planning in October so you can reserve a location with lots of foot traffic and coordinate with vendors or wholesalers. Choose a date or a series of dates when people are most likely to shop.  If planning a sale seems intimidating, start small by reserving a table at an existing gift fair. You’ll benefit from the excitement that’s already there.

Photo courtesy of Bryant University.

2- Recruit a strong team: Find volunteers who are interested in social justice but also look for helpers who are studying finances, accounting, sales and marketing. Put a call out for help on Facebook and at the school’s Volunteer or Ministries fair.  Professors are also great mentors to help guide you.

3-Add in multiple vendors and brands: Many other Fair Trade brands offer similar wholesale arrangements for event sales so you can have a variety of products for shoppers to choose from – find them here.

4- Invite the community: Opening up the sale to the public, if you’re able to, is a good way to increase foot traffic. Promote the sale on campus radio, social media, the school newspaper, and get it in the local media too. Doing interviews and explaining why this sale is special will draw shoppers who are looking for unique gifts that are also doing good in the world.

5-Align your sale with activism-focused events: Some of the best and most effective Fair Trade sales happen during Fair Trade Month in October, World Fair Trade Day in May, and Earth Day in April because they capitalize on existing publicity around social, economic and environmental justice.


We’ve got more ideas for Fair Trade events and fundraisers that work great for campus groups!

Ready to get started? Sign your organization up for a Wholesale account to order products at special prices.

Why Switch to Fair Trade, Organic Coffee?

How can you get your group to start using Equal Exchange’s organic, fairly traded coffee?

Based on the questions that come up most often, here are talking points to help energize them to take action.

“Why should we switch our coffee?”

Equal Exchange coffee is better for farmers, better for the environment and better for ourselves. A small change, like a commitment to using fairly traded, organic coffee has a real and meaningful impact in all three areas. If your members want to promote social justice, environmental sustainability and fair trading relationships, Equal Exchange offers an affordable way to connect your values with your actions without sacrificing taste and quality. Share this colorful display sign with your group.

“Why Equal Exchange instead of a different brand?”

Equal Exchange is a worker-owned cooperative started in 1986 with a mission to build long-term trade partnerships that are economically just and environmentally sound, to foster mutually beneficial relationships between farmers and consumers and to demonstrate the contribution of worker cooperatives and Fair Trade to a more equitable, democratic and sustainable world. Is your current coffee company 100% dedicated to doing the same?

Equal Exchange offers organic, ethically sourced products that you can find in natural grocery stores and cafes, but we offer discounted wholesale pricing to faith-based groups, non-profits, offices and schools so you can access affordable, high-quality and fairly traded products for serving and fundraising. Buying from Equal Exchange, who trades directly with small-scale farmer cooperatives, ensures that more of the money you spend on coffee and other products reaches the hardworking farmers who actually grow them.  Introduce Equal Exchange’s mission with this 2 minute video

“Is Fair Trade coffee really that different from non-Fair Trade coffee?”

Fair Trade is a way of doing business that aims to keep small farmers an active part of the world marketplace. It’s not charity – it’s a sustainable and alternative trading model that helps producers make a viable living and stay on their own land while advancing many economic, social and environmental goals. Long-term trading relationships mean income that farmers can count on, year after year. When you buy a fairly traded product it means that a stable price was paid to farmers, significantly higher than the fluctuating market price. By choosing Fair Trade coffee, you’re supporting a different kind of business model, one without forced child labor and one that is based on dignity and transparency. Fair Trade premiums allow farming communities to collectively decide which development projects they want to use the money on, like improving access to clean water and education.  Small changes we can make surrounding what we choose to consume make a real impact on the quality of the lives of the producers and their families. Read a more in-depth explanation of Fair Trade principles here.

“Does it matter if coffee is organic?”

Conventional agricultural products are steeped in synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides. Not only does the environment suffer from this overload, but so do the people who live and work nearby. Equal Exchange products are certified organic and produced without the use of toxic and persistent pesticides. Many people don’t want to put foods grown with pesticides into their bodies and have concerns for the safety of the farmers and for the future of our planet.   For more information, read our blog posts on conventional vs organic coffee.

“I see other Fair Trade coffees at stores. How is buying from Equal Exchange different?”

There’s a big difference! Equal Exchange has been fighting for market access for small-scale farmers from the moment we were founded. We’re a worker-owned cooperative whose mission is tied to building a just food system where consumers have choices and feel connected to the people in the supply chains. And Equal Exchange works only with other democratically-organized farmer cooperatives. Buying coffee from one of the big guys means supporting a corporation that may have a few Fair Trade products but isn’t 100% dedicated to Fair Trade like Equal Exchange is.  

Another difference is quality and freshness! Did you know Equal Exchange expertly roasts our own organic coffee in Massachusetts daily with a team of quality control professionals? Each batch of coffee is “cupped” to make sure it meets the consistent and high quality standards we set for our coffees. We seal in the freshness on each package so it arrives directly from us to your door super fresh and delicious! Take a peek inside our roastery in this video.

And Equal Exchange partners with many faith-based relief, development and social justice organizations. Learn more about these special partnerships here.

“Can we afford Equal Exchange coffee?”

Have our wholesale price list on hand to answer this question directly. Do folks know what they pay per cup of coffee from your current coffee provider?  Many of Equal Exchange’s coffee options work out be $0.10 per brewed cup. You won’t find specialty grade, organic, fairly traded coffee for less. Some groups afford it by collecting spare change near the coffee pot or by doing a sale of EE products like chocolate and snacks, marking up the costs slightly, and using the profits to cover the cost of their coffee.

“How does it taste?”

We recommend sharing samples to let the coffee do the talking for you!  We’ve heard that this is one of the most effective way to get the whole group on board. By trying samples, folks can experience firsthand the incredible quality and delicious taste of our products. Buy a few single bags of our coffee or order our discounted Organic Foods Variety Pack and let the decision-makers taste coffee, tea, and chocolate for themselves. Hold a taste-test event with darker and lighter roasts to see what people like best before you buy a full case.  We think our products are all mouth-watering, but read reviews from our customers to see which coffees are most popular.

“Does Fair Trade coffee cost more?”

In most cases Fair Trade products are priced closely to similar high-quality products. At local farmers markets in the US, many people are willing to pay prices that reflect the hard work of small-scale farmers because they know the care that their community members put into the organic cultivation of food on their farms.  It makes sense to people that local farmers should make more than what it costs them to grow a product, so, the same concept should apply to products that aren’t grown locally, right? If you’re paying really cheap price for coffee or any other labor-intensive product, there’s a good chance that someone in the supply chain is being exploited. 

We believe a shift in perception of value needs to take place in the marketplace. Equal Exchange has been dedicated to creating an alternative trading model since 1986 and we are committed to continuing to build this movement.

“Where does the money we pay go?” 

In traditional supply chains, middle men take the lion’s share of the profits.  In Equal Exchange’s case, we ensure that more of the money you pay goes to the farmers because we trade directly with the farmer cooperatives. They are the ones doing the hardest work and taking most of the risk, after all! Actually, by the time you purchase from Equal Exchange, the farmers have already been paid and given pre-harvest financing so they can pay expenses well before products reach the US.A fairly traded product means that the producer has received a guaranteed minimum price for their coffee, regardless of the highs and lows of the commodities market. When the market prices are low, the price a farmer gets for their coffee harvest often doesn’t even cover the cost of production. When the market price is high, Fair Trade premiums paid to farmers increase even higher. Farmers in the Fair Trade system even get additional premiums paid to their cooperatives because they sell organic products. These premiums go towards projects that the farming communities choose to improve their social, economic and environmental conditions. Access to clean water, education, and healthcare are basic human rights everyone deserves. 

“Where does Equal Exchange’s coffee come from and who grows it?”

At the heart of Equal Exchange’s story is our relationship with small farmers. We work directly with over 40 small farmer co-operatives in Latin America, Africa, and Asia to bring you high quality, organic coffee.  We have a variety of videos to share as well as different educational resources like farmer stories on our website.

Don’t like mayo? Try Za’atar Potato Salad!

Anticipating of the arrival of the Palestinian Farmer’s Box, we were excited to try this flavorful za’atar potato salad. It’s a zesty alternative to traditional mayo-heavy potato salads, made with za’atar, a savory Middle Eastern spice mix of fragrant thyme, sumac and sesame seeds. We added Equal Exchange’s Palestinian Virgin Olive Oil to the recipe for an extra punch of flavor and fair trade goodness.

5 from 2 votes
Print

Za'atar Potato Salad

This easy-to-prepare salad did not disappoint. And it looked positively beautiful before we dove into it! It's perfect for vegans. It’s also dairy- and gluten-free.
Course Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine American, Mediterranean, Middle Eastern
Keyword potato, za'atar
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 6

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds small red potatoes, cut into quarters
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ cup cider or balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon coarse mustard
  • 1 cup Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • ½ Tablespoon kosher salt
  • ½ Tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon za’atar, plus more for garnish
  • ¼ cup Kalamata olives, pitted and halved
  • ½ cup artichoke hearts, quartered
  • ¼ cup scallions, minced

Instructions

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil over medium-high heat. Add potatoes and cook until just fork tender. Drain potatoes into a colander, allowing the steam to evaporate for 5–10 minutes.
  2. Next, combine the next 7 ingredients into the bottom of a large mixing bowl. Whisk to make an emulsion.
  3. Finally, add potatoes along with the remaining ingredients and stir to blend, coating the potatoes in the vinaigrette. Serve warm or at room temperature, garnished with za’atar.

Recipe Notes

Adapted from “The Local Palate” recipe by Matt Moore.

A glass bowl of mayo-free potato salad with a bottle of fair trade olive oil and za'atar spices.

 

Hungry? Read more picnic recipes!

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Are your Values Skipping Coffee Hour?

You’re part of a social justice-minded congregation.  You’re always educating people about the importance of buying coffee that is ethically sourced, accounting for the hard work and risks that small-scale farmers take to produce Organic, high-quality coffee and support their families.

So why is your congregation still brewing coffee from the big plastic tub after services? Or maybe they serve another fair trade certified coffee from one of the big-box stores, because it’s convenient to pick it up when they buy other supplies.  They may not realize that they’re also supporting a corporation that isn’t 100% dedicated to changing our food system and that the non-Organic coffee is grown using synthetic chemicals and pesticides.

We want to help you make a better choice.

Shop Organic Breakfast Blend >>

We’ve just made it easier than ever before to make the jump and become a fully-committed congregation that only serves Organic, fairly traded coffee every week.  If there were cost barriers that prevented your group from supporting Fair Trade in the past, you can serve our 12oz Organic Breakfast Blend, (our most popular blend!) for only $0.10 a cup!  It’s possible to have affordable, high quality coffee — along with peace of mind — because you’re helping farming families stay on their own land, educate their children, and improve their quality of life.

If you already serve our coffee on occasion, now you can serve it more often. Coffee that matches your values belongs at every gathering!

 

Free resources to promote the flavor of justice in your cup:

Reusable Airpot Labels tell your congregation that they’re drinking organic, fairly traded coffee. Stick them front and center on your coffee pot or carafe. We even have specific Breakfast Blend Airpot Labels!

Our Coffee Hour Poster says, “it’s not just coffee, it’s solidarity.” Use this colorful double-sided poster to announce to members and guests that your church has proudly made the commitment to serving 100% fairly-traded products!

Table Signs  give you multiple opportunities to show that you serve coffee from small-scale farmers and it changes lives. You can even put them next to the coffee pot to advertise that you offer bags of this delicious coffee for sale too!

Message the change using our customizable e- bulletin announcement or paper bulletin insert.

Show or share short videos that explain why fair trade matters.

 

serving Equal Exchange coffee at coffee hour

 

 

You don’t just have to take our word for it. Read why Bethesda Lutheran Church serves Equal Exchange coffee and how they’ve made it work well for everyone, here on our blog.

Keep the switch simple with these five tips for serving fairer coffee.

 

 

Small Farmer Fund Project Updates

Did you know that your purchases support projects that help level the playing field for small-scale farmers?

Equal Exchange allocates a portion of sales from over 7,000 participating congregations to the relief, development and human rights organizations that make up our Interfaith Partner groups.

Here are just a few projects that some of our Partners worked on in 2017 that were funded in part by your purchases.

 

United Church of Christ, Justice and Witness Ministries

Photo courtesy of the Franklinton Center at Bricks

UCC Fair Trade Project Small Farmer Fund contributions supported the Just Food Project at the UCC Franklinton Center at Bricks. A former slave plantation in Whitakers, North Carolina, today, it is a conference, retreat, and educational facility focusing on justice advocacy and leadership development.This project supports a farmers market held at FCAB where local small farmers sell their produce and local residents purchase affordable fresh vegetables and fruits. FCAB is located in eastern North Carolina in an area where many people are in poor health, experience food insecurity, and have poor access to healthy foods. The Small Farm Project is part of a comprehensive approach to community economic development, environmental education, social justice, and health.”

More information about the project can be found here

 

Unitarian Universalist Service Committee

Photo courtesy of UUSC

“Small Farmer Funds from the UUSC Fair Trade Project benefit Fundación Entre Mujeres (Foundation Amongst Women) or “FEM”, a women’s NGO and social movement that was founded in 1995 in Estelí, Nicaragua. The organization’s members are feminist women leaders from rural communities. FEM’s mission is to promote the empowerment of rural women through a variety of projects, such as advancing economic independence through land rights and food sovereignty, preventing violence against women, and promoting literacy. The project is designed to support FEM’s efforts to advance the economic independence of rural women through economic assistance and technical assistance for agroecology projects. Through the agroecology projects, the rural women grow basic grains, coffee, Rose of Jamaica, and will engage in beekeeping.”

 For more information about projects UUSC is working on, visit The Good Buy blog

Presbyterian Hunger Program, Enough for Everyone

Photo courtesy of Presbyterian Church USA, Hunger Program

“The project at the Amrita Bhoomi Center in India was funded in part by PCUSA Coffee Project Small Farmer Fund contributions. The project carries out various training programs on agroecology, including practical farming techniques, seed saving, value addition of produce for improved income and plants to grow to combat malnutrition. It is focused especially on farmer-to-farmer training where successful farmers will share their experiences and resolve problems of new trainee farmers. This methodology is important to build the capacity of farmers themselves — for farmers, seeing is believing. This is also important because farmers need training on agro-ecological techniques to implement them on their farms in a viable manner. The project built a seed savers network linking up existing seed expert seed savers and collecting and conserving their seeds both in situ (on farms) as well as ex situ (in a seed bank) for distribution to farmers. This is important to make farmer saved seeds accessible to all and future generations. The project will also construct a peasant’s seed bank for the conservation of native seeds, which will be distributed to farmers.”

You can find out more about PHP’s work here

Catholic Relief Services 

Photo Courtesy of Catholic Relief Services

“Catholic Relief Services uses donations from partners to invest in cooperatives around the world. Recently funded projects include: Improving soil, water and production practices for members of CEPCO, a fair trade coffee cooperative in Oaxaca Mexico, which is a long time Equal Exchange trading partner. Through the creation of 5 demonstration plots and farmer field schools farmers are learning how to protect local watersheds from coffee waste water and increase soil fertility to increase yields. Additionally 40 vulnerable cooperative members not eligible for government funds for coffee leaf rust renovation were provided rust resistant varieties in order to replace plants lost to coffee leaf rust. Partner funds have also been used for: investing in raw materials for women members of a basket weaving cooperative in Ghana; providing technical assistance to Holy Land Handicraft Cooperative Society; assistance to a delegation of organic fair trade cotton farmers from Burkina Faso to attend an international textile conference; assistance for labor rights delegates for a gathering of representatives from El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico, the US, and Canada in Mexico City.” Read more about CRS Ethical Trade programs here 

Click here to learn more about our Interfaith Partnerships and the projects associated with Small Farmer Funds