Have you ever stopped in your tracks while perusing your local grocery or cosmetic store and considered each and every little step that goes into producing the ingredients used to formulate the product you’re shopping for? It’s important to remember your favorite every day personal-care items don’t just magically appear on the shelves! The ingredients used must be planted, cultivated, and harvested—then sometimes transformed into a new product—by farmers and workers from around the globe. In developing areas, this unfortunately has resulted in exploitation in the past, resulting in workers being severely underpaid and in uncomfortable conditions. Thankfully, the Fair Trade movement is only on the rise, a means to eradicate these concerns and change communities for the better.
At Jedwards International, we are proud to partner with those who believe in Fair Trade. In order to supply fair-trade certified ingredients, Jedwards goes through an in-depth annual audit by the Fair Trade Certifying bodies we are associated with, Fair Trade USA and Fair For Life.
Fair Trade USA was founded in 1998 after a man named Paul Rice had been able to arrange fair trade sales with around two dozen coffee farmers in Nicaragua. It has operated independently from other fair-trade organizations since 2012. Fair Trade USA certifies clothing products in addition to food. It works with large farms and farming co-operatives developing areas globally, as well as farmers within North America. We sell the following products under Fair Trade USA:
- Coconut Oil Extra Virgin Organic (S1151)
- Cocoa Nibs Roasted Organic (G1035)
- Cocoa Butter Natural Organic (B3021)
- Cocoa Butter Deodorized Organic (B3026)
- Coffee Beans Nicaraguan French Roast Organic (P3020)
- Coffee Beans Colombian Organic (P3000)
- Coffee Beans Breakfast Blend Organic (P3030)
- Coffee Beans Mexican Chiapas Decaf Organic (P3032)
Fair for Life was formed in 2006 by the Swiss-Bio Foundation. It is currently a part of the certification body ECOCERT/IMO (Institute of Marketecology). Fair for Life is a non-product specific certification — many fair-trade programs certify based on product category. This means more goods are available to be fair trade certified when working with Fair for Life. It also is one of the only organizations to certify entire companies and the entire chain of production, rather than just the final product. We are audited yearly to be operate under Fair for Life’s standards, and offer two products also certified by them:
- Palm Fruit Oil – Organic Fair For Life (S1376)
- Shea Nut Butter – Refined Organic Fair For Life (B3069)
Fair trade certification has benefits for everyone involved. The workers and producers are protected with a minimum set price for financial stability, worker’s rights protections, eradicating child labor, and non-discriminatory hiring, which has increased the number of women in the workforce. The stability and increase in income has allowed communities better access to improved healthcare, more education, and clean water. The environment in those communities greatly benefit as sustainable methods are promoted and carried out through the supply chain. Consumers are comforted by knowing they are supporting a product and/or brand that supports ethics and positive change. We encourage all to take part in social responsibility whenever possible by purchasing Fair Trade certified ingredients and products, contributing positively to people and communities around the world.