A New Year for Fair Trade Vancouver

The 2016 year was one with many changes for the FTV team! Sadly quite a few of our FTV veterans moved on to other equally great opportunities. However, it was also with great pleasure that we welcomed several more fresh and talented faces to our Fair Trade Community! Because of this, Fair Trade Vancouver’s work and outreach during the 2017 year will increasingly support businesses and institutions in their transition towards acquiring fairer products.

Please click here if you are interested in joining or learning about our community!

Here’s what we got up to for 2016!

April 13, 2016 – all about argan oil – A Fair Trade Vancouver education night event

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Participants making Fair Trade body scrub to take home


April 28-30, 2016 – BMO Health Sports and Lifestyle expo booth

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Visitors entering our Fair Trade product giveaway

Visitors entering our Fair Trade product giveaway


July 9-10, 2016 Vancouver International Soccer Festival

Volo Athletics (maker or FT sports balls) provided the official Fair Trade match ball for the festival

Volo Athletics (maker or FT sports balls) provided the official Fair Trade match ball for the festival

Athletes playing with the Fair Trade Certified match-ball

Athletes playing with the Fair Trade Certified match-ball

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Visitors enjoying their free Fair Trade Certified Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream!

Visitors enjoying their free Fair Trade Certified Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream!

Aug 14, 2016 –the Steeles’ annual BBQ  – Canada’s first fair trade designated private event

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Aug 18, 2016 – Coffee That Changes Lives: A Fair Trade Vancouver Education Night

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Javier (farmer) sharing his story




Participants enjoying a professionally supervised coffee tasting


Participants learning about what it really takes to make the perfect Latte


We were also present at the February Federation of Independent Schools Association of BC convention,  the Fairtrade Canada AGM, and of course the Annual CFTN Fair Trade Conference in Winnipeg!

Our 2016 Annual General Meeting was held on January 3rd, 2017. You can check out a full summary of our 2016 year through our Official AGM Minutes.

Simple Shortcuts to Making Everyday Life more Fair Trade Friendly by Jill Kirwan

The prospect of buying Fair Trade can seem overwhelming at first, especially for those of us who are living on a budget. However it is possible to make a difference by starting small and working your way towards becoming a completely ethical consumer. By making gradual changes to your shopping habits, you will become more aware of the availability of fair trade produce in your area.

If you want to make the switch right now, start off by making these five simple changes towards becoming more fair trade friendly.


Make your Caffeine Fix more Conscientious

Whether your morning vice is tea, coffee or a hot chocolate, start your day right with a cup of your favourite Fair Trade brand. Practically all grocery stores stock at least one brand of Fair Trade tea, coffee and hot chocolate – Allegro, Kicking Horse, and Camino are just some of the high quality brands that are easy to find at many Vancouver groceries. For a more detailed list visit here.


True Blue Treats

Many of us hanker for something sweet to get us through the day, or grab something convenient on the way home to keep us going until dinner. Next time you want to satisfy your sweet tooth or have a little snack, challenge yourself to making sure what you purchase is Fair Trade certified. Not only will it make you think twice about what you are putting into your body, you will enjoy a treat even more knowing that it has been produced sustainably by workers who receive a fair price for their job. Look out for brands such as Ben & Jerry’s, Level Ground, and Green and Black’s, which have all gained popularity in recent years, and should be available in many convenience stores. For more ubiquitous brands Nestle Kit-Kat and Cadbury’s Dairy Milk bars are now made with Fair Trade cocoa. Just look out for the logo!


Be Fair Aware!

Even if you don’t buy 100% fair trade, you can still help to increase awareness of the important work that Fair Trade does. For instance, you can engage your colleagues in a conversation about it over a cup of Fair Trade coffee. If you feel comfortable in doing so, you can also suggest that your workplace, school, church or any community group you belong to serves only Fair Trade coffee and tea. There are even programs available to help you spread the word! Being exposed to Fair Trade products can help raise interest and awareness among the people in your life.


Take a Stand at Lunch Time

When you visit cafes and restaurants, pay attention to any Fair Trade options on the menu. If you do not see a Fair Trade option, inquire with a server or leave feedback. If businesses are aware of what their customers want, they are more likely to make the switch to Fair Trade produce.


Educate Yourself

If you like the idea of Fair Trade but you feel as though you don’t know much about it, take a few hours some weekend to familiarise yourself with the concept of Fair Trade and how it works. This will help you engage with others on the topic and raise awareness in your own way. Vancouver Public Library offers a wealth of publications on the topic of Fair Trade, and numerous resources are just a Google search away. You can start on the Fairtrade Canada website!









Ongoing Fair Trade events and planning – get involved!

All in all we have to say that 2015 has already been a great year at Fair Trade Vancouver, and it’s only mid April!

Thanks to everyone who’s come out to our monthly planning meetings and attending our MeetUps. We are excited and driven to host more events and engage in compelling conversations about what ethical sourcing and fair trade really means in Vancouver and around the world. The next month and a half are shaping up to raise that bar.

April’s MeetUp features businesses and researchers who have explored what it means to certify gold as fair trade. We are so excited to learn more about the challenges and opportunities for those involved in the gold industry throughout the supply chain, and learn about how to make a difference from here in Vancouver. See our MeetUp page for more information.

Fair Trade Month in May will present a number of ways to get involved and show your support for fair and better trade around the world from right here in Metro Van. Come join us for our last planning meeting before kickoff on Tuesday, April 28th, and then stay tuned for opportunities to join the movement. The month’s first event will provide you the chance to shop Fair Trade from some fantastic local companies at their Mother’s Day Pop-Up, and we are excited to announce more campaigns throughout the month. If YOU have an idea please let us know! Come out to a MeetUp and let someone know, or contact us at marianne@fairtradevancouver.ca to share your thoughts.

Thanks for your interest in Fair Trade!