Fair Trade Your Chanukah!
In less than two weeks from now, we’ll be gathering around our menorahs, playing dreidel, eating potato latkes (and jelly doughnuts), celebrating the festival of Chanukah. Chanukah comes from the word meaning “dedication”, and refers to the re-dedication of the Temple in Jerusalem after the Maccabee’s battle for religious freedom.
On Chanukah we not only celebrate our people’s freedom, but are also called upon to re-dedicate ourselves to work for the freedom and liberation of all people. Making consumer choices based on fair trade principles provides a powerful opportunity for us to act on our Jewish values.
When we buy Fair Trade products, we know that:
- Artisans and farmers are paid a fair and livable wage
- No child labor is involved
- Safe working conditions are provided
- Environmentally sustainable production methods are used.
- Profits are reinvested into the community for education, health care, and social services /li>
- Communities become self-sustaining and can raise themselves out of poverty
Here are some specific Fair Trade products you can choose to use this Chanukah:
- Sindyana Fair Trade organic olive oil for frying your potato latkes or with your oil-based menorah
- Menorahs from Ten Thousand Villages. This year they offer four uniquely different ones, made in Cambodia, India and Mexico; two of them are made from recycled materials.
- Fair Trade Chanukah gelt by Divine Chocolate; it’s the only totally guilt-free gelt where you can be assured that no child labor was involved.
- Paper cut Chanukah banners from Casa Bonampak made by fair trade artisans in Mexico add a festive quality to your gatherings.
Dedicate one night of Chanukah to learn more about fair trade and how it has positively changed the lives of artisans and farmers using these resources:
- What’s Jewish About Fair Trade?
- Mayan weavers in Guatemala
- Coffee farmers in Colombia
- Chocolate farmers in Ghana
- Textile workers in Nepal
- Craftsperson in South Africa
We all have the opportunity to create miracles in this world!