Many thanks to Chuck Bordman for this creative 48-second video about the corporatization of Fair Trade and the work of committed brands to support small farmers and Authentic Fair Trade in this context.



To read the full comic book, “The History of Authentic Fair Trade, click here.

To learn more about Fair Trade vs. Free Trade, click here.

To learn more about Chuck Bordman and his work, click here.

COOPERATION IN PRODUCTIVITY  Marcala, Honduras Don Mario Pérez likes to learn, and he likes to challenge the people around him to learn. While visiting his home and coffee farm during an organic workshop in early June, Don Mario and his wife, Joselinda Manueles, explained their philosophy to me. See more here.

By Damian Carrington in the March 14, 2014 issue of the Guardian
Reposted/printed from The Progreso Network
Rising heat, extreme weather and pests mean the highland bean is running out of cool mountainsides on which it flourishes

Global warming is leading to bad, expensive coffee. The perfect storm of raising heat, extreme whether and ferocious pests mean the highland bean is running out of cool mountain                                       sides on which it flourishes.


Rich western urbanites expecting to dodge the impacts of climate change should prepare for a jolt: global warming is leading to bad, expensive coffee. Almost 2bn cups of coffee perk up its drinkers every day, but a perfect storm of rising heat, extreme weather and ferocious pests mean the highland bean is running out of cool mountainsides on which it flourishes. Read more here.

By Carly Kadlec, Green Coffee Purchaser

I recently visited San Gaspar Chajul, a predominantly indigenous town in Western Guatemala where the Asociacion Chajulense (or simply “Chajul”) coffee co-operative has its headquarters. I spoke with the general manager, Arcadio Daniel Galindo, who told me they were in crisis: an outbreak of coffee leaf rust in the region was devastating coffee production and only getting worse. – See more here.  

And I have only this to share with you.

coop grocer ad

coffee graphic

From our friends at Catholic Relief Services:

For World Fair Trade Day, May 10th 2014 ALL DAY
You can watch Connected By Coffee for free online at right from the homepage.

We want to inspire you with the voices of these farmers on a day to honor fair trade. Please share this with everyone! DVDs and public screening versions are for sale now as well!

(A film by Stone Hut Studios, produced by Chelsea Bay Dennis and Aaron Dennis)

Learn more about WFTD at Fair Trade Resource Network.

or World Fair Trade Organization (WFTO).

Connected By Coffee is an inspiring and thought-provoking look into the lives and history of the people who grow the coffee we drink.

Coffee is a multi-billion dollar industry, yet most coffee farmers live in poverty.

Connected by Coffee follows two North American coffee roasters on a 1,000-mile journey across Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador and Nicaragua to listen to the stories of the people who grow their coffee. On the way they meet with soldiers who have become growers, powerful women who are controlling their own destinies and countless farmers joining together to form cooperatives.

We’ll witness how coffee is changing from a tool of oppression into a tool for empowerment, and how it is transforming small-scale growing communities across the world. And we’ll see the indomitable spirit of people who are determined to live joyfully in the face of economic, social, and environmental challenges.

As ethical consumer practices like fair trade grow, questions arise about how fair they really are amidst the historical injustices of global politics and international trade. Connected By Coffee confronts these questions and motivates consumers to make a difference.

Throughout the journey we learn how every cup of coffee we drink connects us in a very real way to the people who produce it.

It’s Fair Trade Month and this Saturday, May 10th  is Fair Trade Day.  Appropriately, today we received this alert from the AFL – CIO.   They are asking folks to share the graphic below with friends and family on facebook and twitter.

Their news is as follows:

Thousands of people are in D.C. today to call on Congress to support fair trade and a 21st century economy that works for everyone—not just corporations.

Because of your efforts, we’ve changed the conversation in Washington about trade and stalled—for now—efforts by politicians and Big Business groups to pass the anti-democratic “fast track” trade bill. But these corporate politicians and Big Business interests aren’t going to just ride off into the sunset. They’re already conspiring again to use their massive wealth and power in Washington to silence us. That’s why we’re rallying in D.C. today—and you can stand in solidarity with us.

Share this graphic with your friends to let them know you won’t back down to corporate CEOs and will fight for people-centered trade policies that create good jobs, protect workers’ rights and stop corporations from having more control over our lives.

Just last week, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), who’s the highest-ranking Republican on the Senate committee where the “fast track” bill is sitting right now, made it clear he would do what he could to get it passed by June. At the same time, the Business Roundtable announced it would be running a major ad and media blitz to get Congress to support more old, stale and failed trade policies. This isn’t a coincidence. They haven’t won yet, because of the amazing work you all have done.

Make no mistake. They aren’t stupid and they’ve got a lot of money to burn. They’re going to try to make people forget the misery that NAFTA, CAFTA and other bad trade deals created for millions of workers and their families—lost jobs, lower wages and corporations wrestling more power away from our communities to pad their pockets. So, we can’t let up.

Join me in keeping the momentum going against the “fast track” trade bill by sharing this graphic with your friends now:


In Solidarity,

Celeste Drake
Trade and Globalization Policy Specialist, AFL-CIO


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