Have you seen the information about fair trade? It's a form of purchasing products from developing nations in a fair way so as not to exploit the natural resource or the manufacturer. Historically, indigenous products such as coffee or tea would be purchased with disregard to a sustainable plan or responsibility to the farmer. Cheap labor was the answer for great pricing. This practice was deemed unacceptable by many consumers and now, associations formed to create regulations for fairness in purchasing without responsibility, for fairness to all involved in the final product.
Fair trade includes all items, not just natural food products. It also means those items made that are unique to the culture, such as sterling silver jewelry, handbags, fabrics or even baskets. These new associations also include help with marketing initiatives that help in selling the items. Many stores carry the fair trade labeling to help consumers choose with awareness. These associations also help with marketing and design of the original product to better fit the salability of the western world and with figuring out better sales channels. With more and more of consumers aware of the issues and concerned with the rights of the developing nations, the time is right to develop these types of products.
Child labor laws are another consideration of the fair trade industry as well. In past history, many families living in developing nations relied on the children to bring home money some time. The textile industry was hit hard with the child labor problems and when it was brought to the public, regulations were put in place to curb this practice. It is still an issue but it is not as rampant as it used to be. Other regulations include farming in a sustainable way and a stop to slave labor. These regulations may not totally eliminate these problems but it may help to slow down and minimize the practice.
So before you buy the sterling silver rings from Bali or the fresh pineapple from Peru, check out if it is a fair trade product. Ask your retailer to carry items from fair trade industry. Assure yourself that there is responsibility in the end product and that the standards are all carried out ethically. With enough consumers demanding these things, a better lifestyle may be the end result for those in the developing country.