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Here is a short summary of the history of the fair trade movement:

  • After World War II, church groups established a direct system of trade with displaced peoples in Europe. Ten Thousand Villages and SERRV still sell handcrafts made by people in the developing world.

  • In 1988, with coffee prices extremely low, a group from the Netherlands established a system for giving coffee growers financial security and a certification process that allowed consumers to purchase coffee that was fair to the growers. This developed into the Fair Trade system of today.

  • In April 2000, the town of Garstang in England, declared itself 'the World's first Fair Trade Town'. There are now over 400 fair trade towns as well as more than 200 areas campaigning towards status in the UK. There are now 656 fair trade towns and campaigns in 18 countries around the world.

  • In 2003, Oxford Brookes University in the United Kingdom became the first Fair Trade University. There are now well over 100 Fair Trade Universities and Colleges in the UK, with many more working towards status.

  • In 2006, Media , Pa., declared itself the first U.S. Fair Trade Town. As of August 2014, there are 34 Fair Trade Towns in the U.S., including Milwaukee (third in the country & the first major city) and Madison (first state capital).

  • In 2008, the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh became the first Fair Trade University in the U.S. Since then 24 campuses have joined (as of August 2014.)


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by reinecka last modified Aug 26, 2014 06:02 PM
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