BOSTON, MA - May 3 - Fair Trade leaders and activists will gather at the World Fair Trade Day Celebration at the Church of the Covenant in Boston this Saturday, May 8, at 5 p.m.|
The event will highlight what the average citizen can do to impact trade rules. The evening will feature presentations by MIT Professor Noam Chomsky, live performances by local bands and fair trade product vendors.
Another featured speaker, Jorge Abarca Trujillo, president of the Nicaraguan coffee farming cooperative COSATIN, has acutely felt the devastation caused by rigged trade rules that benefit rich countries at the expense of the world's poor. For coffee farming families in Trujillo's coffee cooperative, Fair Trade Certification has helped many Nicaraguan farmers improve the overall living conditions of their families. "Our homes now have electricity and many of our children can attend school because of the impact of Fair Trade Certification." said Trujillo.
Fair Trade Certified products, ranging from coffee to cut flowers to bananas, ensure that producers in poor countries receive a reasonable market price for their crops. In the case of coffee, unfair trade practices, compounded by massive oversupply, have caused the market price of coffee to plummet to approximately 60 cents per pound -- a rate 50 percent lower than the price of coffee was just 3 years ago. However, Fair Trade Certified coffee growers receive a baseline price of a $1.26 per pound of coffee. Fair trade Trade Certification enables cooperatives of farmers to provide basic education for their children, healthcare, and electricity and sanitation to their communities.
Oxfam's Make Trade Fair campaign mobilizes consumers to be a voice for farmers, laborers, and factory workers whose livelihoods have been undermined by the unfair trade rules. "Fair Trade Certification is an alternative approach to the sale of coffee, tea, clothes, jewelry, and handicrafts that is increasingly becoming more mainstream, putting more of the profit in the pockets of the communities that deserve and need it most," stated Shayna Harris, Fair Trade Coffee Organizer for Boston-based Oxfam America.
-- Tickets: are $5-10 (sliding scale) at the door.
-- Location: Church of the Covenant, 67 Newbury Street, Boston
-- Time: Doors Open at 5 PM, Speakers at 6 PM, Music from 7 PM
-- Speakers: Noam Chomsky, MIT professor of linguistics and philosophy; Jorge Abarca Trujillo, president of Nicaraguan coffee farming cooperative COSATIN; Jeannette Huezo, Global Economy education coordinator, United for a Fair Economy
-- Musical Guests: The Foundation, The Bay State Love Machine, Bajuco, Drop