Another gift giving season is upon us and it’s time to decide on a shopping strategy. In one ear you’re encouraged to shop locally, in the other ear you hear about the benefits of choosing Fair Trade gifts. So now it’s time to decide…buy local or Fair Trade?
It’s important to note that choosing Fair Trade products can actually help your local merchants survive in this sluggish economy. Prices for cheap imports made in sweatshop factories outside of the US are usually so low that local merchants have difficulty competing on price. So during a time when consumers are looking to cut costs wherever possible, cheap knock offs made in sweatshops often outsell locally made products, even though the quality is drastically lower.
Back to the question at hand…which strategy is best, and is one better than the other? To answer a question with a question, who says you have to choose? The Buy Local and Fair Trade movements both have their benefits and share similar values.
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