PCC Natural Markets to Teach Shoppers Benefits of Fair Trade

SEATTLE -- Natural and organic foods retailer PCC Natural Markets will be celebrating Fair Trade Month this week with an event at its Fremont and Issaquah, Wash. locations, featuring products that meet the segment's criteria of high quality, good taste, sustainable growing practices, and fair treatment of workers.

The event will give consumers the opportunity to learn about the benefits – both locally and globally -- of the fair trade movement, and to sample dozens of Fair Trade Certified and self-certified fair labor products, PCC said. They will also learn how all parties involved in bringing fairly traded products to market -- farmers, retailers, and consumers -- benefit. (Story continues below.)

PCC offers a variety of fair labor products, including coffee, tea, chocolate, sugar, rice, and bananas, and its entire coffee line -- bulk, bagged, and brewed -- is 100 percent organic, shade-grown Fair Trade Certified coffee.

The fair trade business model, which assures that small producers in developing countries are treated and paid fairly, has been applied around the world for almost two decades. The movement started with coffee, the commodity hardest hit by falling market prices over the past few years, leaving millions of small-scale farmers struggling for survival at below-poverty level. By organizing into democratic farmer cooperatives that adhere to specific criteria regarding co-op governance and growing practices, these farmers have been able to vastly improve the lives of their families and communities.

PCC Natural Markets operates eight locations in the Washington cities of Fremont, View Ridge, Greenlake, West Seattle, Seward Park, Kirkland, Redmond, and Issaquah.
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