April 24, 2016 |
Economists are gnashing their teeth over much of the back-and-forth about global trade in the presidential campaign. Mostly, the candidates are dissing the potential trade deal between the U.S. and other Pacific-rim nations, known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), and global trade in general. The candidates either didn't take Economics 101 in college, or they are ignoring what they learned - that global trade is a plus for the economy, and thus for jobs and incomes. Kiboshing trade deals is for the most part bad economics.
March 11, 2016
Buzz: Hey Marnie, what does "fair trade" mean on a wine label? I've seen it on coffee and thought on wine it meant the wines were made for fairs and conventions. Marnie: No, Buzz, it's a social-justice movement that promotes sustainability and equality for the communities that produce the goods we buy, especially in the developing world. Buzz: Wow, that sounds like something started by the hippies. Marnie: Not really, Buzz. A number of organizations provide certification on ethical standards and grant the right to apply a "fair trade" seal on packaging to inform consumers.
December 7, 2015
On a visit earlier this year to Rwanda in central Africa, I gained a profound appreciation for the fair-trade effort. Donatha Uwajeneza, several months pregnant and lugging a huge sack loaded with her handwoven grass and agave baskets, had traveled three hours by bus from her village, Muramba, to Kigali, the capital, hoping to sell her work to the vendors whose stalls cram the Kimironko market. Uwajeneza is a mother of eight in a land teeming with need. Her grateful hug and proud smile when I bought a set of trivets, accented with strands dyed turquoise and sienna, brought me to tears.
July 7, 2015
M ARY HARVEY, 43, of Pennsport, and Cindy Ray, 45, of Fairmount, own Urban Princess, a gift shop and boutique on 4th Street near South, in Queen Village. It features clothing, accessories, pottery and other items by more than 70 local artisans. After a fire in April 2013 destroyed their previous shop on 4th Street near Fitzwater, they relocated and started over. I spoke with Harvey. Q: How'd you come up with the idea? A: I started a mobile clothing business called Rack and Roll Clothing.
June 5, 2014
THE RELEASE of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, a captive of Islamist extremists for almost five years, is good news not only for his family but for all Americans. But the price the Obama administration paid for the 28-year-old soldier's repatriation was freedom for five detainees at Guantanamo Bay who are hardened Taliban commanders. Critics of the administration say that that price was too high, and they make three other arguments: that the exchange violated a long-standing U.S. policy of refusing to negotiate with terrorists; that this country shouldn't negotiate with the Taliban because it might legitimize the group in Afghanistan; and that the swift release of the detainees violated U.S. law. Most of these arguments are invalid or overstated.
February 21, 2014
J OE CESA, 62, of Washington Square West, is co-owner and roaster at Philly Fair Trade Roasters, in the old Goldenberg's Peanut Chews factory on Wyoming Avenue near 2nd Street, Feltonville. The firm specializes in small-batch, organic, 100 percent Arabica coffee, hand-roasted daily and packaged in recyclable bags. Cesa formerly owned Joe Coffee on Walnut Street near 11th in Center City. Q: How did you come up with the idea for the biz? A: We started in 2002. I did a business plan, studied fair trade and wanted to do quality coffee.
August 22, 2013
B RITTNEY "BLEW" Lewis, 25, of Kensington, owns Leotah's Place CoffeeHouse, at York and Coral streets in Kensington. Lewis, a single mom, started the business with a former business partner in 2010 as a spot where patrons could gather for coffee, conversation and community events. Q: How'd you get the idea? A: I worked at Starbucks but realized there weren't any cafes that were true community spaces in lower-income neighborhoods. I met a friend with a portable espresso machine who introduced me to direct-trade coffee.
March 10, 2013
The Unexpected Journey of an Activist Entrepreneur and Local-Economy Pioneer By Judy Wicks Chelsea Green. 320 pp. $27.95 Reviewed by Elizabeth Eisenstadt Evans If readers want a tell-all, or a warm and highly personal account of a well-known Philadelphian's life and times in Good Morning, Beautiful Business , they are going to be disappointed. Judy Wicks saves most of her passion for topics such as fair-trade commodities, socially conscious philanthropy, and treatment of edible animals.
March 7, 2013
K RITI SEHGAL, 29, a University of Pennsylvania grad who lives in Center City, is co-founder (with her brother, Kunal, who lives in New York) of Pure Fare. The company, launched in April 2011, provides fresh, healthy all-natural foods supported by Web tools that enable consumers to track health goals. Pure Fare has two locations: 21st Street near Walnut, and South Street above 16th, both in Center City. Q: Tell me about the idea for Pure Fare. A: It started as a technology idea.
July 9, 2012 |
Consumers will pay a little more for coffee and chocolate to ensure that the farmers who produce those foods get a fair wage. So why not ask them to pay more for milk? That's the notion behind a Vermont-based program designed to raise money for struggling New England dairy farms while educating consumers about those family businesses. Keep Local Farms urges colleges, universities, and other institutions in New England to charge a little more for milk, with the extra money going to the farmers.