Do your consumption habits promote gender equality?


Do your consumption habits promote gender equality?

Autora: Eugenia González.

Do you know the Sufi story about the two dogs? A man had two dogs: the good dog and the bad dog. And he discovered one thing: if he only fed the good dog, the bad dog would get weaker.
That is to say, every day you get to choose of feeding one dog or the other.
Here I tell you how I realized that, with my consumption habits, I was feeding the bad dog. And also what I did to contribute to gender equality with my purchasing decisions and start feeding the good dog.

mujeres trabajando en cooperativa o cultivos de productos Comercio Justo

The land couldn’t be in my name
When I began to become interested in Fair trade, I was especially struck by one fact: in many places in the world, women cannot have land in their name.
I will say it again, because it was difficult for me to grasp the enormity of this fact: there are many women who will never be able to have the land in their name. Even if it belongs to them, it belongs to their family, they work for it… What’s more, even if a man wanted to give it to them or sell it to them, he couldn’t either. In some places in the world, the land always belongs to a man.
I am trying to imagine this situation.
As I have gone to university, own a business, can vote, and can choose which contraceptive method I want to use, it is difficult for me to imagine the implications of living in a part of the world where even the land I work can never be in my name. And you, can you imagine that?

  • Today, 8 men own the same wealth as the poorest half of the world’s population, 36,002 million people.
  • One third of people living in poverty have a job and earn a salary. The data does not record women who work at home, without receiving any salary.
  • Women earn, on average, 24% less than men.

Data from the United Nations Development Program
Did you know that Fair Trade promotes gender equality?
For a product to be Fair Trade certified, it must meet 10 criteria. And one of them is that gender equality is promoted in its cultivation, production and trading. And that is not a petty matter, but something truly extraordinary.
That is why supporting Fair Trade with my shopping choices seems to me to be the easiest, most effective and, why not say it?, comfortable form of activism.
When a product is Fair Trade, the women who have participated in the creation of the product:

  • Receive a salary on equal terms with men.
  • Work in environments where they will not feel threatened.
  • Have conditions that protect their health (especially during pregnancy).
  • Their voice is heard: they are an active part of the cooperative, they have a voice and a vote, and they can access management positions.

Which Fair Trade products promote gender equality?
That’s the beauty and power of Fair Trade. ALL Fair Trade products contribute to change. All of them.
Does Fair Trade suggest that you change all your consumption habits?

No, Fair Trade suggests that you look for ethical and sustainable alternatives to commonly consumed products. The most typical are coffee, cocoa and sugar, but there are many more (cereals, clothing, jewelry… even mobile phones).

Fair Trade is a tool you can use to promote change and achieve gender equality..

Look: every day I consume. For example, every day I get up and drink my coffee and put sugar in it. Well, Fair Trade works with that reality: consume, I am going to consume. In that case, I decide that when I buy coffee or sugar my money goes to a place where equality between men and women is promoted.

Shall we take action? Here you have several ideas

  • Do you prefer coffee or tea? Or do you prefer infusions such as roooibos? In Aternativa3 online shop you have dozens of options to find a fair trade alternative to your favorite drink.
  • And in your office, what coffee do you have? Alternativa3 has a coffee system for offices proposing organic and Fair trade options. Switching to Fair Trade coffee is a powerful action within your company’s corporate social responsibility plan. In addition, it is a great coffee … And everybody likes that!
  • Is your birthday coming? Do you have to send a gift? Christmas is coming? In Spain there are more than 100 neighborhood stores dedicated to fair trade. Surely you will find the perfect gift you need.

And if you have no time or no will to go shopping, on AlterNativa3’s website you will find many options:

  • Coffee, cocoa, panela and lots of delicious options (all organic)
  • Super cute Zero Waste items
  • Gift sets with very tasty organic products
  • Bamboo tableware for babies…

ALL products on AlterNativa3’s website have the Fair Trade seal.

You must realize that your power as a consumer is huge. And with your daily actions you can contribute to gender equality.
Shall we feed the good dog?

Yes, show me all the Fair trade products.


- 06-11-23
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