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jonathan rosenthal equal exchange

“We did not want to do anything that would relinquish worker control,” says Everts, who describes the unnamed investor as a fundamentally good person. Equal Exchange Coop © All Rights Reserved. “I think the exhilaration and discomfort are often related,” he said, adding that in his experience, the work of new economy and of social change “is about holding that energy and harvesting from the discomfort and the exhilaration, from the connection of another human being of being here, grounded on the earth, to build community.”. Staff defines Mission and Guiding Principles at weekend retreat.1996: Pilot project with Lutheran World Relief. But the founders hung on; by the third year they began to break even.The Changing World of FoodBut we’re getting ahead of ourselves in the story. Another, the Cooperative Development Institute, helps start and build capacity in cooperatives, while the Community Economic Development Group in Boston is creating a hub of new-economy organizations and linking them around such themes as worker ownership, participatory budgeting, local finance, community cooperatives and other ways to build community wealth. Equal Exchange started with an idea: what if food could be traded in a way that is honest and fair, a way that empowers both farmers and consumers? Rosenthal worked there for about 15 years, and Equal Exchange did pay farmers as much as possible, and worked in solidarity with cooperatives and liberation movements. The result was a victory that made it clear that Equal Exchange wasn’t going away. Rosenthal responded that the coalition itself doesn’t work on policy, but some of its members and allies (Farm Aid, Oxfam America and others) do, and the coalition is connected with some global organizations. Now Push Buffalo is working at the state level. Organic Peruvian, Equal Exchange's first organic product, quickly becomes our top seller.1989: International Coffee Agreement expires - coffee prices drop from $1.30 to $0.80 per pound.1990: Equal Exchange formalizes worker-owner co-op structure.1991: Equal Exchange formally adopts European Fair Trade pricing. One audience member asked what a new economy would look like in 15 or 20 years. Rosenthal has spent decades promoting sustainable agriculture. It has allowed children in the U.S. to participate in promoting Fair Trade along with their parents. tripling our coffee roasting capacity.2008: Equal Exchange opens a new Café in Boston, and launches Equal Exchange bananas in partnership with Oke USA. “It’s one of the most scalable projects that we’re involved in,” said Rosenthal; “42 million people get their energy through rural electric coops.”. Together we can grow the relationships and programs built over the past 15 years, while updating and strengthening the organization’s capacity to move boldly into the future. The founding trio set up the West Bridgewater, Massachusetts-based company, which imports coffee, nuts, oils, chocolate and tea, as a worker-owned cooperative. With over 30 years of experience behind us — a history replete with successes, failures, innovative partnerships, exciting new products, and inspiring stories — we are nevertheless humbled by just how far we still need to go. Board approves first strategic plan for 2000 - 2003.2000: Equal Exchange receives Business Ethics magazine award for Stakeholder Relations.2001: Coffee prices hit lowest price in 100 years: $0.42/lb.2002: Equal Exchange introduces hot cocoa mix, the first U.S. cocoa product to carry the Fair Trade Certified™ seal, and to use Fair Trade Certified™ sugar. Its sister organization, Democracy Work Initiative, does consulting and support for worker ownership and employee stock ownership. Local and national congressmen, such as Rep. Joe Moakley and his dynamic assistant Jim McGovern, provided critical help alongside a groundswell of grassroots support. The U.S. public was beginning to see their nation's family farms squeezed out and replaced by industrial-scale, corporate-run agribusinesses reliant on toxic chemical fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides. After a two-year consulting project and a period of unemployment, “I realized that where I needed to be was at the intersection of what I call ‘small is beautiful’ and systems change work.” Simultaneously he was recruited to be executive director of the New Economy Coalition – a network of about 200 U.S. and Canadian organizations that collaborate to build power and voice, to create systemic change. Our vision includes breaking new ground by bringing Fair Trade home—by fostering direct relationships with family farmers here in the United States.

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