Multinationals having fairtrade products

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Multinationals having fairtrade products

Postby Thirteen-thirty-seven » Fri Mar 17, 2006 10:57 am

Several large multinational companies have started producing fiartrade brands. Is this a step in the right direction, or a cynical attempt to take over the market?
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Postby parnassus » Fri Mar 17, 2006 2:03 pm

Realistically, I think multinational companies are seeking to cash in on the public's new-found concern (no doubt inspired by events such as Live 8 and the Make Poverty History campaign) for the condition of poor labourers in the Third World. The workers in the Third World will benefit from this Fair Trade upsurge, but so will the greedy corporations.

T.S. Eliot once said, "The last temptation is the greatest treason: to do the right deed for the wrong reason." I am torn between the natural inclination to be happy that the corporations have bowed to public pressue and started to offer some desperately poor people a chance in life, and the uneasiness that I feel over their shadowy motives.
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Postby eDan » Sat Mar 18, 2006 1:18 pm

I rather agree with Vicky on this one in that it's difficult to believe that multi-nationals have good intentions at heart rather than viewing fair trade as a new market sector to invade.

The problem with trying to be selective in what you purchase is that it's often very difficult to know which products are made by some small family company with soundly agreeable intentions and which are manufactured by a large-multinational which little more than market share on their mind.

There's the wider issue of whether we should be purchasing fair trade products at the local supermarket of it we should be making the full effort and buying them at somewhere such as Oxfam.
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Postby oreilly » Thu Mar 23, 2006 3:55 am

I think it's certianly very good that an effort is being made to fairly pay those who produce our products.

No doubt the big concern for companies is financial - aparently there was a surge of community feel good from companies a while ago, about being good corporate citizens and what not, but I think that's well past.

At least the pressure is working - and if the pressure from the consumers can eventually create a fair marketplace, there's hope yet. Currently, there doesn't seem to be a better reasonable path to action then good old peer pressure....
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Postby Thirteen-thirty-seven » Thu Mar 23, 2006 8:46 am

oreilly is right. The situation presents me with a dilemma. I very much doubt that the multi-nationals in question are doimng this out of good intentions. However, if people don't buy their fairtrade products, there's no incentive for these companies to continue making changes for the better.

I still prefer to buy things from the smaller fairtrade companies, such as traidcraft, people tree, divine and cafedirect. However, I worry that if nobody buys multinationals' fairtrade products, they will discontinue these lines and not make any more improvements.
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Postby Hermionefan5 » Fri Apr 07, 2006 9:45 pm

I think fair trade is a good thing. I think that companies should be innocent until proven guilty. Just because they are a big company doesn't mean that they don't want to do some good in the world to benefit others. I think that we should give it a chance. If we find out that one company is doing bad, then we don't have to buy fair trade products from them anymore. :) Fair trade has helped a lot of people. :D I read at my church last week that the fair trade coffee we buy for our congregation helped a couple send their children to school. Without fair trade, those kids might not have gotten an education! :( I think bands like Coldplay and U2 have the right idea sponsoring fair trade. :D
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Postby intowiz » Fri Apr 07, 2006 11:14 pm

though its a good thing fair trade are finnaly getting some multinationals after them i think its just the man cashing in. soon enough trade will become just like evry other companie owned by the man.
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Postby towildhoney » Wed May 17, 2006 10:16 pm

nestlee fair trade come of it!
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Postby happy_go_lucky » Wed May 17, 2006 10:36 pm

the fact is fair trade helps no one because the percentage the farmers get for the products is the same the consumer is paying rich companies more thats all and nestle are murdering bastards and id cut their products out of my diet if they didnt have a share in almost all food products
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Postby Alice » Thu May 18, 2006 8:43 pm

Who cares about the motives, the point is that poor pepole get a better deal. If the public feels hapier and companys make money as well then that just meens that everybodys happy. And it does help pepole. Mabye if pepole where less pesamistic we'd be rid of poverty already.
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Postby happy_go_lucky » Thu May 18, 2006 8:56 pm

poverty is a symptom of capitalism and do you really feel that fair trade will help at all if we keep protectionist policies free market economy does not work planned economy is the way too go
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Postby Alice » Thu May 18, 2006 9:10 pm

I do understand it's not simple, but I don't see how fair trade can be an overall bad thing
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Postby parnassus » Thu May 18, 2006 10:02 pm

If poverty is a symptom of capitalism, why are the communist countries among the poorest in the world? Oh, China may have a booming economy - but it also has a high infant mortality rate and a disproportionate number of people live in filthy slums and peasant villages. That economy benefits "the State", not the people who make up the state. It's the same in South America.

There is poverty in capitalist and communist countries alike - the real problem lies in our attitude.
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Postby happy_go_lucky » Fri May 19, 2006 8:00 pm

china is not a country that can ever be describbed as communist plus im a socialist so i beleive in the work of grammsci as well as marx and in south america in the countrys that have elected "socialist" leaders more like social democrats but a step up from the capitalists they had before their are massive leaps in social conditions and aleviation in the poorest areas these countrys still need time though they do have years of US imperialism to put right
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Postby Hermionefan5 » Sat May 20, 2006 6:58 am

happy_go_lucky wrote:china is not a country that can ever be describbed as communist plus im a socialist so i beleive in the work of grammsci as well as marx and in south america in the countrys that have elected "socialist" leaders more like social democrats but a step up from the capitalists they had before their are massive leaps in social conditions and aleviation in the poorest areas these countrys still need time though they do have years of US imperialism to put right


Erm, last time I checked (which wasn't very long ago), China was a communist country. Correct me if I'm wrong. :)

I know that it's not that simple to rid the world of poverty. I don't think that we can ever do that because we are only human beings. But I believe if you can help one person be able to go to school because of fair trade then you have done a great deal of good. I do agree it is kind of scary that big companies are taking on the idea. But what if we are wrong about those companies? You know, good people can run big corporations too. Innocent until proven guilty, I say. You never know, the people we think are doing evil might really be helping the poor and the people who we think are good might be really greedy inside. It's all about perspective when it comes to good vs. evil. Robin Hood robbed from the rich and gave to the poor. Was he good or evil? It all depends on which side you were on. Just because most big companies are looking for more and more riches, doesn't mean they all are. Major League Baseball donates much money to charities each year and the players of the teams do actually help other people in many ways. Kerry Wood goes to Children's Memorial Hospital because he loves visiting the kids there with his wife, who got him into visiting. The Cubs donate to the hospital each year. MLB also helps fix kids' baseball fields so they can have a better place to play and excercise. MLB also donates to Habitat for Humanity, which helps build houses all around the world for those less fortunate. The Chicago Bulls and the Chicago White Sox were sponsors of our Relay for Life walk against cancer last week. These are huge organizations with very powerful people who own them, but they do these things because they care. Big companies can make a big difference to help people, just as a small company can or one single person can. :D
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