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Sunday, April 24, 2005

Ben & Jerry's Sports 'Fair Trade' Label

Products offer consumers peace of mind

Ben & Jerry's newest product arrived in supermarket freezers this week, offering a less-guilty pleasure for consumers who worry about who labored to make their ice cream.

Their Coffee; Coffee Heath Bar Crunch; and Coffee, Coffee Buzz Buzz Buzz! flavors have been designated "Fair Trade Certified' by Transfair USA, an Oakland-based nonprofit group that audits the books of U.S. companies to ensure that ingredients come from farmers who get fair prices for their goods

"Fair trade is about making sure people get their fair share of the pie,' said Ben Cohen, co- founder of the Burlington, Vt. ice cream maker. "The whole concept of fair trade goes to heart of American values and the sense of right and wrong. Nobody wants to buy something that was made by exploiting somebody else.'

...Even a small price premium means a lot to the producers, who are mostly small family farmers. While most bean growers receive about 20 cents per pound, the fair trade price is $1.26 a difference that can provide a decent life in countries such as Colombia, Ethiopia and Indonesia.

SGVTribune.com

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