Handbook of Research on Fair Trade
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Handbook of Research on Fair Trade

Edited by Laura T. Raynolds and Elizabeth A. Bennett

Fair trade critiques the historical inequalities inherent in international trade and seeks to promote social justice by creating alternative networks linking marginalized producers (typically in the global South) with progressive consumers (typically in the global North). The first of its kind, this volume brings together 43 of the foremost fair trade scholars from around the world and across the social sciences. The Handbook serves as both a comprehensive overview and in-depth guide to dominant perspectives and concerns. Chapters analyze the rapidly growing fair trade movement and market, exploring diverse initiatives and organizations, production and consumption regions, and food and cultural products. Written for those new to fair trade as well as those well versed in this domain, the Handbook is an invaluable resource for scholars and practitioners interested in global regulation, multi-stakeholder initiatives, social and environmental certification, ethical labeling, consumer activism, and international development.
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Chapter 10: Domestic fair trade in the United States

Sandy Brown and Christy Getz

Extract

Walmart’s February 2014 announcement that it would join McDonald’s, Taco Bell and other major food corporations in signing on to the Coalition of Immokalee Workers’ (CIW) ‘Fair Food Agreement’ underscores the growing interest in farm labor issues within the landscape of United States-based agrifood activism. For two decades, the CIW had been organizing in Florida’s farm fields and pressuring buyers to support a nominal price premium and Code of Conduct for the tomato workers who are arguably among the most exploited of the nation’s agricultural labor force (Marquis 2014). Recently, mainstream media outlets, food bloggers and popular writers have also turned their attention towards the farmworkers who have largely been sidelined within US alternative food movements. At long last it appears that ethical consumers’ interest in ‘knowing where their food comes from’ might move beyond the agrarian idealism of alternative food movements to include the politically and economically marginalized immigrant workforce so central to US agriculture. Meanwhile, the phenomenal success of international fair trade has prompted calls to ‘bring fair trade home’ to small-scale farmers and workers within the United States. Yet, despite this flurry of attention, progress has been slow. To date, certification of domestic agriculture remains limited and the question remains as to whether such programs will gain traction within the United States, as they have in international export markets.

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