Frequently Asked Questions

 

What is fair trade?

The items we buy and sell are connected to the livelihood of others. But fair trade is more than just providing fair prices for goods produced in developing countries. From production to purchase, fair trade is a way of doing business that promotes better prices, good working conditions, local sustainability, and fair treatment of farmers, artisans and workers around the world. Conventional trade traditionally leads to injustices including discrimination, poverty, and exploitation. Fair trade enables people in developing countries to improve their lives, their communities and their futures.

 

Do you carry locally made items?

For the most part, we carry items that are sourced from artisans in developing countries. As a non-profit, we have focused our mission to support these economically marginalized people. We carry a few items that are made locally, including chocolates and soaps, but these are items that use fair trade certified ingredients like cocoa and shea butter. In addition, we support local fine artists by featuring a local artist every month. We display their work in our shop for a month, and host an artist reception the first Friday of the month as part of Art After Dark.

 

How do you ensure that artisans are paid fair wages?

We rely on the verification of several fair trade associations like the Fair Trade Federation and the World Fair Trade Organization. These organizations screen each of their members to ensure that artisans are being paid fairly, have good working conditions, and are empowered by their work. Learn more about fair trade principles.

 

How do you find the artisans you buy from?

We attend trade shows and fair trade conferences to discover new talented artisan groups. Since we are a small retailer, we rely on a network of fair trade wholesalers who are already working with artisan groups around the world and are importing their items to North America. Through these fair trade wholesalers, we are able to bring more amazing items to our shop and support many more artisans.