New York, NY In Support of Fair-Trade Certified Coffee

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New York, NY, US

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Type: Resolution

Status: Adopted on 6/23/05 (by voice vote)

Source File: http://www.nyccouncil.info/issues/intros_act.cfm?intro=Res%200762%2D2005

Text:

Res 0762-2005
Resolution recognizing and supporting the efforts of organizations that work to increase consumer awareness of and commitment to poor farming communities around the world through Fair Trade and strongly encouraging the purchase of Fair-Trade Certified coffee, especially by City agencies that use taxpayers’ money to purchase coffee.

Whereas, Coffee is the world's second most actively traded commodity, after crude oil, with approximately 25 million farmers and coffee workers in over 25 countries involved in producing coffee around the world; and

Whereas, Americans consume one-fifth of all the world's coffee, making the United States the largest coffee consuming country in the world; and

Whereas, Few Americans realize that many agricultural workers in the coffee industry work under abysmal conditions for meager wages and small coffee farmers are vulnerable to volatile market pricing and often receive prices for their coffee that are less than the costs of production, forcing them into a cycle of poverty and debt; and

Whereas, Intensive and industrial coffee farming contributes to environmental problems, such as the contamination of air and water supplies through pesticide poisoning, destruction of tropical forests deforestation, and the loss of habitat of many song bird species; and

Whereas, Many consumers are searching for more socially conscious and environmentally responsible ways for conducting their lives, which do not exploit people, animals, or the environment; and

Whereas, Currently, Fair Trade Certification represents a viable solution with respect to coffee production by offering, an equitable and fair partnership between consumers in North America and producers in Asia, Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbean that corrects addresses market imbalances by (1) guaranteeing for small farmers a minimum floor price per pound that always exceeds the market price and is no less than $1.26 for small farmers' harvest, (2) ensuring direct and long- term trade relationships between importers and producers, and (3) encouraging organic and sustainable cultivation practices; and Fair Trade Certification, where an importer must meet stringent international criteria, paying a minimum price per pound of $1.26; and and

Whereas, Numerous Fair Trade associations, advocacies, companies and certifying agencies such as the Fair Trade Federation, TransFair Canada and the Fair Trade Foundation, etc. have all taken the to be involved in the Fair Trade movement, promoting social justice and environmental sustainability; and

Whereas, Fair Trade further provides much-needed credit to farmers, and also offers technical assistance such as help transitioning to organic farming through shade-growing and improving product quality ; and

Whereas, With the profit benefits generated through the Fair Trade network system and from receiving a fair wage, small coffee growers are able to invest in such areas as community development, health, education, and environmental protection; and

Whereas, Numerous Fair Trade certifying agencies such as TransFair USA, TransFair Canada, and the Fair Trade Foundation U.K.; Fair Trade associations such as the Fair Trade Federation;, advocacy organizations,; and businesses have taken a leadership role in promoting social justice and environmental sustainability through Fair Trade; and

Whereas, As a leading consumer of goods and services, the City of New York has a responsibility to set a high standard of ethics with regard to economic activities for our community, and to ensure that its capital is spent in a manner consistent with decent moral principles, including obtaining goods produced under fair conditions; now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the Council of the City of New York recognizes and supports the efforts of organizations that work to increase consumer awareness of and commitment to poor farming communities around the world through Fair Trade; and, be it further

Resolved, That the Council of the City of New York strongly encourages the purchase of Fair-Trade Certified coffee, especially by City agencies that use taxpayers’ money to purchase coffee

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