Fair Fashion - Insights on Fair Trade Clothing Companies & Fair Apparel

Fair Fashion - Insights on Fair Trade Clothing Companies & Fair Apparel

Posted 6.14.2012 in Articles by Neil-Denny

As Americans became increasingly concerned about the state of the world and the truth of underprivileged farming and working families abroad, they began to look for opportunities to equalize workers and their working conditions. You can help improve the environment and communities around the world by beginning or continuing to shop responsibly through the purchase of Fair Trade certified products. Not only will you receive high quality products but you will also be a part of this new wave of change for the good of the world. The easiest way to contribute to this growing organization is to start with what you wear and shop at Fair Trade certified businesses.

A Fair Trade Certified brand means the company has successfully passed compliance assessments conducted by Fair Trade USA through Scientific Certification Systems. The Fair Trade Certified label indicates the company's commitment to social and environmental responsibility. The brand must use Fair Trade cotton, produce garments in a factory that meets Fair Trade standards, and agree to pay a 1-10% premium to a worker-controlled fund, which will then be used at the discretion of the garment workers in the form of funds for disaster relief, scholarships for workers' children, infrastructure improvements in their local communities, or a cash bonus for factory workers.

Good & Fair Clothing is one of such companies dedicated to using only Fair Trade certified and organic materials. Shelton Green founded the company to steer clear of the unfair wages that result from the mass production of fast fashion. “Good to the earth and fair to the people” has always been the credo of the company, and to do so, they have created a clothing line that uses environmentally sustainable methods and make sure their workers are compensated fairly for their time and effort. Good & Fair Clothing uses 100% organic cotton to produce tee shirts, ladies underwear, and men's boxers that can be found at retail stores across the US, including STAG Men's Clothing, Blackbird, and Urban Eve in Texas, Greenheart in Chicago, Trade as One in Santa Cruz, and online at Prunella Darling. Good & Fair also offers to make custom graphic tees using Fair Trade and organic cotton, perfect for organizations, events, bands, and sports teams.

Another company with a fine line of Fair Trade certified clothing is prAna. The company's name comes from the Sanskrit word for breath, life, and vitality. Their aim was to create a clothing line for those who lead a healthy lifestyle, especially for those who actively participate in climbing and yoga. Because of their love for the environment, prAna has extended their collection to include Fair Trade certified items including the Ziggy Sweater, Soul T, and Kaya Sweater Dress for women, as well as organic tees and long sleeves for men. Their products can be found on prana.com, at any of six prAna locations throughout the nation, as well as 1,400 specialty retailers across the United States, Canada, Europe, and Asia. 

The Fair Trade organization was founded to improve the livelihoods of disadvantaged people through the promotion of equitable trade, and to provide them with an outlet for the exchange of information and ideas. Their products also aim for a better environment through sustainable production. From coffee, tea, and produce to apparel, linens, and sportsballs, Fair Trade USA has worked to improve the international trade model that will benefit underprivileged farmers and workers worldwide and strengthen our global community. As consumers, we seldom take the time to realize that changing the way we eat and live can actually make an impact on a global scale. Seeking out Fair Trade certified products is a good start.

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