We have worked with producer groups in Nepal since 1984. By assisting in product development, purchasing and importing these artisans products our goal has been to create mutually beneficial, long-term partnerships with low income, refugee and fair trade artisan groups in Nepal. The principles of fair trade are central to our philosophy and the way we do business. In 1998, four key international organizations created a widely accepted definition of Fair Trade:
“A trading partnership, based on dialogue, transparency, and respect, that seeks greater equity in international trade. It contributes to sustainable development by offering better trading conditions, and securing the rights of disadvantaged producers and workers-especially in the South.” (FINE, 1998)
As we look back, we are thrilled to see that the concepts of fair trade do work to bring economic, spiritual and cultural health to all of those involved. Through the stories we share with you here, you will see how fair trade is much more than paying a fair wage. It can provide a foundation so that even the most marginalized artisans have access to social, economic and environmental justice. Over the course of many years, we applied the tenants of the Fair Trade Federation Principles in our business and have seen countless success stories of artisans who thrived in their communities and created opportunity for future generations.