Walk into Healthy Living and the first thing you’ll see is our gorgeous Produce Department, a wild and wonderful world of the freshest, highest-quality fruits and veggies you’ll find anywhere! We buy direct from our beloved local farms throughout the year, so our produce is about as fresh as if you’d picked it yourself. We’ve been working with local farmers for over 20 years and love doing business with this amazing community of hard-working people, who form the backbone of Vermont. We have a plethora of local and organic options, produce from ecologically grown and wild-crafted sources, and the cleanest conventional alternatives at the best prices. From local greens and snap peas, to seasonal apples and berries, we have everything a great Produce Department needs, plus a few fun, seasonal surprises! Not sure what celeriac is? Wanna know the best way to prepare morels? Just ask our produce staff – they’re always there to help!
Equal Exchange Fair Trade Bananas!
By Richie Snyder • Tuesday, May 27th, 2014
Healthy Living Market and Cafe is proud to sell and support Equal Exchange Fair Trade bananas! We believe in providing the freshest product to our Guests while also being socially-conscious. When you buy Equal Exchange Fair Trade bananas you are supporting small scale farmers and workers. They also taste delicious! You can truly taste the difference between a Equal Exchange Organic Banana and a conventional one.
From the Equal Exchange website:
Equal Exchange was founded in 1986 to challenge the existing trade model, which favors large plantations, agri-business, and multi-national corporations. Equal Exchange is different because it supports small farmers; and connect consumers and producers through information, education, and the exchange of products in the marketplace. Underlying their work is the belief that only through organization, can small farmers survive and thrive.
Standards and Practices
Fair Trade is a way of doing business that ultimately aims to keep small farmers an active part of the world marketplace, and aims to empower consumers to make purchases that support their values. Fair Trade is a set of business practices voluntarily adopted by the producers and buyers of agricultural commodities and hand-made crafts that are designed to advance many economic, social and environmental goals, including:
- Raising and stabilizing the incomes of small-scale farmers, farm workers, and artisans
- More equitably distributing the economic gains, opportunities and risks associated with the production and sale of these goods
- Increasing the organizational and commercial capacities of producer groups
- Supporting democratically owned and controlled producer organizations
- Promoting labor rights and the right of workers to organize
- Promoting safe and sustainable farming methods and working conditions
- Connecting consumers and producers
- Increasing consumer awareness and engagement with issues affecting producers
History of Fair Trade
Fair Trade started with individual companies called Alternative Trade Organizations (ATOs), who made a commitment to work directly with indigenous peoples and to market their products directly to consumers. By cutting out middlemen, ATOs have been able to pay farmers substantially more while offering a competitive product.
Later, organizations like the World Fair Trade Organization were formed to communicate ideas about Fair Trade. With the introduction of Fair Trade certification organizations like TransFair USA, products from around the world started to be certified as fairly traded. In an endeavor to place a world standard on what is fair, these labeling organizations came together and formed theFairtrade Labelling Organization (FLO).
How Fair Trade Benefits Small Farmers
Fair Trade is not a charity or handout; it is simply a process of giving a fair exchange. Equal Exchange provides high-quality foods at a fair price to you. By cutting out the middlemen, Equal Exchange pays the farmers more and gives you a better value.
Help Support Fair Trade
The easiest way to support authentic Fair Trade is to purchase fairly traded products from small farmers. Your actions as a consumer support or discourage actions by businesses. By making the choice to buy fairly traded products, you help provide health care, education and technical trainings for farmers, workers, and artisans around the world. By supporting Equal Exchange, you join a movement to reclaim the food system – to make it better for farmers, consumers and the earth.
In our Produce Department we always strive to carry Fair Trade bananas. Once in a great while the best we can do is organic due to supply issues.
Keep your eyes peeled for products produced by Equal Exchange and join millions of other socially-conscious consumers across the United States by becoming a “fair trader.”
Look for Equal Exchange coffee and chocolate at Healthy Living Market and Cafe as well!
Read More about our Produce Department on our blog. Read the Blog