Friday, October 08, 2010

How Does Every Purchase Matter?

The newly renamed "Fair Trade USA," formerly known as TransFair USA, celebrates Fair Trade month each October. This year's theme is "Every Purchase Matters," and as a believer in thoughtful consumption, I embrace that idea on many different levels. I wonder what fellow conscious consumers like you think the theme means? How and why are you celebrating Fair Trade this month? Let us know with comments.

For me, I just ordered my free Reverse Trick or Treating kit (and I gave a donation to organizer Global Exchange because every purchase does matter) Order yours soon! I'm expecting that the kits will provide an easy, fun outreach activity for the kids and parents in my new neighborhood.

For my day job, I am joining advocates participating in the Ohio Fair Trade Expo to give a keynote, "Celebrate Fair Trade, with Eyes Wide Open" and begin my holiday shopping.

On October 26, at the Busboys & Poets in downtown Washington, DC, I'll on a panel discussing the new documentary "The Dark Side of Chocolate." It was co-produced by Robin Romano, who I met during my farmworker pesticide safety days, and I expect to be sobered but motivated to continue to help change the chocolate industry.

These examples of fun, learning, and activism combine into a month where my answer to "How Does Every Purchase Matter?" turns out to be, as usual, that Fair Trade is an opportunity to ask what is important in life (at this time of year that includes rituals/holiday traditions ), to explore how my role as a consumer impacts others positively and negatively, and to recommit to being a thoughtful, engaged consumer all year long.

Please share your answers!

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