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October 12, 2011 - Image 11

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2011-10-12

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6B Octobr.Wedesday



Erom Page SB
with protected living standards of the
Though fair trade is often overlooked
in favor of the more accessible organic
movement, it's a form of easy activism for
the student looking to make a statement
about workers' rights and international-
"Fair trade is sort of in contrast to
unfair trade," said John Vandermeer,
professor of ecology and evolutionary
biology, "Unfair trade is where there is a
power relationship where some element
has more power than the other element.
Trying to get that into balance, that's
what fair trade is all about."

coffee typically have a far better life than
farmers who are not involved in it."
Generally, fair trade coffee is higher
quality than the typical Folgers fare.
Furthermore, fair trade coffee is often
intertwined with organically grown cof-
fee. You're probably not going to find fair
trade coffee at 7-Eleven, but if you reach
for a slightly pricier brew like the coffee at
Cafe Ambrosia on Maynard Street you'll
get a richer and ethically produced bev-
erage. But you have to look for the coffee
that says "fair trade certified." Not every
specialty coffee is fair trade, and chances
are your Starbucks fix isn't. And it isn't
always certain how fairly traded fair trade
actually is since one has to trust the word
of independent certifiers like TransFair.
"TransFair is one organization that is

Co-op bought directly from farmers.
"Everyone shops at the Co-op because
they trust us to sell fair trade, and we do
the best we can," Harmon said.
Some coffee roasters skip a couple
steps in order to directly trade with farm-
ers. They personally build relationships
with coffee farmers and some even go so
far as to fly to the actual farms. Ann Arbor
coffee shops and roasters like Lab Caf6 on
East Liberty Street and
Mighty Good Coffee
Roasting Co. on North
Main Street are driving
this movement forward.
"Direct trade came "The r
about with the need of
really being able to see f .i
firsthand where your
coffee's coming from," fly die
said Charles Tilling- these I
hast, a barista at Lab
Cafe. "The roasters fly and th
directly to these farms, 1
and they are able to able to
make sure the farm is
making the best cof- sure th
fee, and they pay them
directly. There is no is m aki
middleman so a lot of
the time they're getting best c
paid 50 to 100 percent
more than they would and
with fair trade because
there's less steps in p
between." pay t
Even if you're miles
*away from any farming dire(
co-operative and can't
verify that the coffee
is fairtrade, buying ah
fair trade coffee sends a -
message to coffee roast- Tillingh
ers and shops around
campus that customers Lab b
support the movement,
according to Vander-
"In my opinion,
drinking coffee that's
fair trade is always a
good idea. ... Minimal-
ly, it says there is a market for it, so they
should be concerned about it. If it says it's
fair trade, it's worth demanding the prod-
uct," Vandermeer said.
At the request of students, the Univer-
sity has been offering organic fair trade
coffee in dining halls around campus since
February 2006 with the help of Michael
Lee, director of residential dining servic-
es. Lee joined the University in 2005 and
implemented fair trade coffee at other col-
lege campuses, according the University
spokesman Peter Logan..
"Providing fair trade coffee is not only
an opportunity to offer quality product to
campus diners, but it also is an opportuni-
ty to be socially conscientious toward food
providers as well as consumers," Logan
wrote in an e-mail interview.
But a random survey of students at Cafe


Ambrosia, the Michigan Union, North
Quad Residence Hall and other student
hubs revealed that students are uncertain
about what fair trade actually means. Stu-
dents clutching cups of coffee shrugged
their shoulders and admitted that they
really didn't know why certain brands
boasted a fair trade sticker and why others
didn't. LSA senior Nora Stone said the lack
of popularity of the movement is due to
the typically tight student
"The one problem with
(fair trade) is the cost is
often so much higher than
if I were buying sort of
asters normal, free trade stuff,"
Stone said. "And obviously
,tly to for a poor college student,
the cost is a pretty big
arm s, determinate in where I
shop and what I buy."
y are Though Stone said she
would prefer that her
[ ak money went directly to the
people who are actually
farnm doing the work to receive a
living wage as opposed to a
ig the hording of funds by multi-
national corporations, she
dffee, admits the reality is that
j it's harder to convince
hey students of the benefits of
buyingfair trade unless
more people advocate for
iem fair trade products.
ly "I certainly think that
awareness could be more,
widespread. For people in
our age group, the instinct
Lrles isto go to Eroger rather
ries than
thna store that is acting
st, Cafe in a more fair trade meth-
od," Stone said.
rista Vandermeer believes
that if students become
more cognizant of their
consumption habits and
the far-reaching effect
their actions have on peo-
ple around the world as
well as their pocketbooks,
they'll accept the extra cost.
"There's also a personal stake in the
fair trade movement as well. We do want
to - at least most people I talk to and most
students I talk to - want to live in a fair
world," Vandermeer said. "And fair trade is
part of living in a fair world. If people have
to live in abject poverty and awful condi-
tions so people inthe developed world, like
this country, can have the luxuries they
feel they deserve, that's not a fair world.
That's not the kind of world most students
want +olie n "

Wednesday, October 12, 2011 The Statement 3
news in review
Five of the most talked-about stories of the week, ranked in ascending order of actual importance
1 .
Treasure-hunting company Odys- TwoAmerican economists, Thom- Israel Prime Minister Benjamin A violent protest at Egypt's Coptic Apple Inc. co-founder Steve
sey Marine Exploration Inc. as Sargent and Christopher Sims, Netanyahu announced yesterday Church in Cairo on Sunday night Jobs passed away Wednesday
announced the discovery of the shared the Nobel Prize in econom- a deal with Hamas that will swap ended with 24 casualties. It was afternoon in his home in Palo
sunken steamship Matola in the ics on Monday for their research Palestinian prisoners for the the deadliest protest since the Alto, Calif. after a long battle with
North Atlantic on Monday, The on the relationship between gov- liberation of wartime Israeli soldier, revolution that overthrew former pancreatic cancer. Jobs, age 56,
British vessel was toting 19 tons of ernment policies and the economy Sgt. Gilad Shalit, who has been a President Hosni Mubarak eight was also co-founder and former
silver reportedly worth $19 million. after the recent recession. prisoner of war the last five years. months ago. CEO of Pixar Animation Studios.

0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 0 8 9; 10
quotes of the week from the archives
"It will be the Night ofLong Knives. It will be a HotDog Heaven
purging of this country."
GLEN BECK, RADIO HOST, referring to the Occupy Wall Street
movement and murders committed by Nazis in 1934.
"There's nothing as courageous in my judgment
as someone who had a leg blown of in combat
overcoming the difficulties."
GEORGE W. BUSH, FORMER PRESIDENT, after recanting what he
misses about the presidency and how he doesn't want U.S. troops to think
he does not respect them.
t's the hot dog stand that's never open. The bright red building (if you can call it
that) has been an icon of Ann Arbor since 1979. Jules Van Dyck-Dobo, owner of
the rulesthe 23-by-8-foot hot dog shop, called Le Dog, said he wouldn't trade anything
for the window on East Liberty Street. Van Dyck-Dobo was featured in The Michi-
gan Daily ("Le Dog owner lives in Relish," 4/8/1986), which revealed he speaks
No. 326: No. 327: No. 328: five languages, is a Spartan and a gourmet chef: His stand cooks up a mean Lob-
Don't get used to Fall break is best When visiting State ster bisque.
The limited time Le Dog is open allows him to concentrate on the fine dishes,
this weather, Daisy for visiting cider this weekend, don't like peasant and cherry sauce, he said in the article. The revenue it makes from the
Duke. Michigan mills and apple forget to mention lunch break munchies of local Ann Arbor employees is enough to keep the stand
always does this. orchards - not that they didn't get afloat, despite it's three hour Monday through Friday store hours. It is closed on
the weekend. In the late 80's, Le Dog sold 150 hot dogs per day. "Now you know
studying. in to Michigan. why I sell hot dogs," Van Dyck-Dobo said.
by the numbers
in billions of dollars, the amount Apple Inc. is in thousands of dollars, the price of Jobs's in millions of dollars, the total money Jobs
worth today. Last month, it surpassed Exxon high-functioning computer he designed lost when NeXT computing and Pixaar
3 8 Mobil as the world's most valuable company. that was used to create the Internet. Animation Studios struggled financially.

The roasters who purchase coffee
beans from farmers are the power holders
in this relationship. They have all the eco-
nomic and political capital and often set
prices for coffee beans that aren't suffi-
cient wages for farmers' livelihoods. Fair
trade strives to eliminate this "middle
man" so that coffee purveyors are buying
directly from farming co-operatives.
"That's the basic idea, to try and get
fairness associated with what we pay for
16pffee, and what the farmer gets for cof-
fee," Vandermeer said. "Farmers who are
involved in the fair trade movement in

known for being quite fair about regulat-
ing itself," Vandermeer said. "So consum-
ers just have to trust that TransFair and
other organizations are actually certify-
ing efficiently."
The People's Food Co-op in Kerrytown
is known for its fair trade and organic cof-
fee, but assistant manager Jess Harmon of
Cafe Verde - the coffee shop in the Co-op
- isn't so sure about the-effectiveness of
fair trade. The People's Food Co-op still
goes through coffee buyers, even though
the store says it is fair trade. Harmon
said she would be more comfortable if the

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