October is a Big Month

October 5th, 2012 | Simcha Weinstein | Comments Off on October is a Big Month

October is both Non-GMO Month and Fair Trade Month – a time to really educate your customers about key issues facing our food system. To support this educational process, we are posting 2 signs on our website for you to use – one for Fair Trade and the other on GMO’s. These can be easily downloaded by clicking on the images to the right, printed out, and serve as effective communication tools for your retail operation.

It’s a great time to encourage your shoppers to shop for Fair Trade bananas. It’s important to keep in mind that the food we eat is so much more than simply sustenance and pleasure. Every day lives are deeply affected by how we raise our food; where we purchase our food from; and the social, political, and economic variables that make up our very complex food system. How our food arrives to our plates is often a very complicated and very muddled process. It is certainly not perfect, and there are times that the political and economic factors overwhelm the process, but it’s a very real part of how our food is grown. One thing that does seem pretty clear, and it’s that buying Fair Trade products can make a substantial difference in people’s lives. Sure, there is a premium that comes with the purchase, but Fair Trade is indeed worth the extra cost. In our industry, we play a critical role by educating our customers and helping them to understand that they are not paying a little more for just a piece of fruit… they are paying a little more for humanity. When consumers buy Fair Trade they are doing far more than making a food purchase; they are making an investment in people’s lives.

For more information about Fair Trade and Fair Trade Month you can visit the Albert’s website and The Fair Trade website. When you go to the Albert’s website, I encourage you to watch the video we put together on Fair Trade. The photos you will see in the video are from Melody Meyer’s (our VP of Global Initiatives) visit with our banana growers and you can see first hand, as Melody did, the very challenging conditions that some of these communities live with day in and day out.

October 2012 marks the third annual Non-GMO Month. Recent polls show that more than 90% of Americans want to know whether or not their food contains GMOs. In the past year alone, over 1.2 million Americans have contacted the FDA asking them to implement mandatory labeling of GMO foods, and more than a dozen states have taken up GMO labeling bills, including a voter initiative in California that puts mandatory GMO labeling on this November’s ballot. The end game for this month is to convince the U.S. government to listen to the majority of Americans – over 90% – who want foods that contain genetically modified ingredients labeled. For more information we encourage you to visit the NON-GMO website.

This is an exciting month for our food system. Let’s make it matter!