Tuesday, 29 January 2008

Fair Trade Towns in Canada

In the January 17-23, 2008 issue of NOW, Wayne Roberts writes another insightful article, this time about the introduction of "fair trade towns" in Canada:

"For a while there, it looked like fair trade might join the casualty list of alternative social movements reduced to a market niche.

But the grassroots are back in full swing, thanks to “fair trade towns,” an idea that’s been sweeping through Europe since 2001 and just crossed the ocean to Canada in 2007, landing first in Wolfville, Nova Scotia, and La PĂȘche, Quebec.

This new wave exemplifies the latest wrinkle in democracy. As governments drift into reduced relevance – too big to do the small things for individuals and community groups, too small to do the big things with giant multinationals – fair trader influence is growing.

From almost a standing start in the 1990s, the sector is now a billion-dollar business marketing some 2,000 products from 50 countries to 22 others, raising the living standards of some 5 million workers."

See Fairville, Canada: Labour-conscious foodies move onto new turf as fair trade campaigns are adopted by entire cities for more...

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