I've heard the expression "fair trade" before but really had no idea what it meant. Do you know what "fair trade" is? In a nutshell, "fair trade is a rapidly growing movement dedicated to paying workers fair wages rather than minimum ones." Ah. As a former minimum wage worker, that is definitely something I can relate to and want to support. And the company Fair Indigo was started around the whole idea. Their whole business was started "to create stylish, high-quality clothes while paying a fair and meaningful wage to the people who produce them."
Besides clothing and gifts for men, women and children, Fair Indigo now offers Joobles (Responsible, Sustainable, Adorable™). Started by a Peruvian family -- a mom, a dad, and their daughter -- this company provides work and hope to hundreds of rural and urban Peruvians all over the country. Small groups of impoverished workers are trained to run their own small businesses making hand-knit clothing and accessories. In addition to providing much needed employment, they train workers throughout Peru in such valuable skills as quality control and production planning. Fair Indigo also works with this company's charitable arm by donating free breakfasts and school supplies to children of the workers.
Each incredibly soft animal is made with eco-friendly dyes and organic cotton grown in Peru. Calley the Cat stands 11" tall (as all the friends do) with adorable whiskers and a huggable green and yellow body. For parents hunting for eco-friendly toys, all of the Joobles are made with cotton grown without the use of pesticides, insecticides, herbicides, fertilizers, or other chemicals. Eliminating these chemicals is not only better for baby, but also for workers and for the environment.
"Equally important, we pay fair wages to the good people who make our clothes and accessories instead of the minimum wages that are often the norm today," explains Robert Behnke, Co-founder and Vice President, Merchandising for Fair Indigo.
There are 9 Joobles to choose from:
Bella the Bunny
Calley the Cat
and also: Fair Bear
Icy the Penguin
Jiffy the Giraffe
Mel the Monkey
Pip the Dog
Retailing for just $29 each, Joobles can be found online at http://www.fairindigo.com/ or at specialty e-tailers like Oompa.com. Visit Fair Indigo's website to see detailed images of each animal. The colorful characters range from turquoise to celery green.
Parents who have shopped for organic toys will appreciate the value of Joobles. Other pricier knit toys not only cost more, but are often made of acrylic yarn and not made under fair trade conditions. Joobles are not only 100% adorable but will improve our planet for the next generation by supporting small sustainable farming and fair trade. Isn't it amazing how the right toy can make a difference?
Fair Indigo. Gifts with a purpose.
**WIN IT! I have to give to one lucky reader, any one of the nine Joobles you choose (though, since they are handmade, they are running out of some styles - Icy and Jiffy are already sold out!). To win, head on over to http://www.fairindigo.com/ and click on the tab About Fair Trade to learn what this term really means and why you should care. Then come back here and leave me the name of another company that advocates fair trade. Be sure to leave your email address if you do not have a blog or if it is not easily found on your blog. Due to the holidays, this giveaway is only open until 11:59 p.m. EST, Saturday, December 20, 2008 and the winner has only 24 hours to respond. Good Luck!**
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