Posts Tagged ‘Fair Trade movement’

Twenty-two years ago, Rink Dickinson, Jonathan Rosenthal, and Michael Rozyne founded the first Fair Trade coffee and tea organization in the United States. Soon thereafter, their first Fair Trade coffee line, Café Nica, was launched. At that time, the Sandinistas were governing Nicaragua and there was an embargo preventing Nicaraguan products from being exported to the United States. The specialty coffee craze hadn’t yet caught on like wildfire throughout the country. There was no Fair Trade seal. People thought these three guys were crazy.

The times have certainly changed since then. The Sandinistas were voted out of power (only to have been voted back in a few years ago.) Neighborhood coffee shops abound and many consumers can differentiate between a high quality, fairly grown cup of coffee and the majority of everything else being served out there. The Fair Trade seal is stamped on many lines of coffee, tea, fruit, flowers, and other products.

But what has been the overall impact? (more…)

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