Since 2012, SFU has been a part of the fair trade movement. The SFU Bookstore sells fair trade merchandise across its stores, while SFU Dining Services provides Ethical Bean coffee and other ethically traded products. SFU Burnaby’s Starbucks was also the first to offer fair trade espresso in Canada; SFU received Fair Trade Canada’s Campus of the Year Award in 2014 following this decision.
According to fair trade programs coordinator Torrye Mckenzie, over 18,000 pounds of fair trade coffee has been sold at SFU, and has inspired other universities to follow the fair trade movement.
“The fair trade growth across Canadian campuses is a reflection of the changing student values,” Mark McLaughlin, executive director, Ancillary Services, told SFU News. “More and more, students now expect the products they purchase to drive positive international social change. They aspire to improve the lives of small-scale farmers globally and we are at their side in this engagement.”
According to Fair Trade Canada, fair trade products originate from small farms and plantations. The definition of “fair” trading includes adequate premiums on cost of production, a minimum cost for all products, and fair and protected workers’ rights. Producers of these farms and plantations also own 50 percent of their fair trade markets, which allows them to maintain their standards and rights as workers.
“SFU is one of the 45 campuses across Canada who are celebrating fair trade products and businesses during Fair Trade Campus Week from September 26–30. We can take pride in the fact that we are part of a national movement dedicated to bettering the lives of people in developing countries across the world,” said Mckenzie.
Throughout the week, SFU Dining Services, Renaissance Coffee, and the SFU Bookstore will host various events across campus including discounted coffee and chocolate, trivia contests, coffee sampling, and a banana giveaway.
Students are invited to engage with the event on social media, using the hashtag #FTCampusSFU.