You wake up on Monday morning, and it was a long weekend. You are little too tired and groggy, and certainly not ready to start your week with that spark of energy. The answer for over half of adults in America is a morning cup of coffee. It is more of then than not that you hear someone tell you “Don’t talk to me before I’ve had my coffee. It has become a dependent for a lot of people in today’s society.
The other thing about coffee is that it is almost exclusively an imported item to the United States, with only Hawaii growing a significant amount of coffee beans. And unfortunately this means that a lot of field workers that pick coffee beans are mistreated and/or severely underpaid for their labor. It is also a large contributor the child slavery epidemic. I found a video called Child Labour-The Price of a Cup of Coffee that is a translated German Documentary that explains the child labor that is used in the coffee industry. It is prevalent in South America and on the Ivory Coast.
So, how can we avoid supporting coffee farmers that contribute to bad labor conditions or child slavery? In an article in thedailygreen there is a list of nationwide brands that offer fair-trade brands, including popular company Newman’s Own. Another good place to reference is www.betterworldshopper.org. They rank all the coffee companies with Equal Exchange at the top and Maxwell House at the bottom.
In conclusion, next time you shop for that crucial start to your day, think about the people your purchases affect, and try to purchase from a company that is socially responsible.