Respect and protect on a global scale

When you shop with our partners or host a CRS Ethical Trade event, you’re supporting companies that uphold the highest standards of ethical and fair trade.

Courtesy of Mata Traders

Together, we’re transforming lives. Twice.

Our partners are bringing fair prices, safer working conditions and environmentally sustainable practices to poor and disadvantaged communities around the globe. But that’s only the beginning: With every purchase, a donation is made to the CRS Fair Trade Fund. The Fund invests in CRS projects around the world. We’re helping farmers adapt to climate change, improving access to markets and supporting critical education and advocacy initiatives in the United States.

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Current Projects

The CRS Fair Trade Fund is currently funding initiatives in El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras and the Holy Land. Learn more about each of these projects below.

Supporting Farmer Exchanges In El Salvador

The CRS Fair Trade Fund is supporting ACALEM and San Carlos II, two coffee cooperatives in El Salvador. Funds are used for farmers to participate in exchanges and learn from established farmer organizations about environmentally friendly coffee farming, solar coffee dryers and testing coffee quality in a cupping lab.  Additionally, a revolving fund supports farmers to purchase coffee for their contracts from nearby farms.

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Strengthening coffee business practices in Nicaragua

The CRS Fair Trade Fund is supporting Flor de Dalia and Flor de Café, two coffee cooperatives in Nicaragua. Funds are used to strengthen business practices, promote environmentally friendly farming practices and increase the value of coffee for cooperative members.

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Preparing coffee farms for fair trade and organic certification

The CRS Fair Trade Fund is supporting COMICOVEL, a coffee cooperative in Honduras, to prepare 150 coffee farms for fair trade and organic certification. Through agricultural and farm management training and technical assistance, farmers will be eligible for specialty certifications, which will increase the value and marketability of their coffee.

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renovating olive wood workshops in the holy land

CRS has renovated 18 olive wood carving workshops in the Holy Land. The majority of workshops in this cottage industry are poorly wired and ventilated putting workers and the environment at risk.  CRS is working with the Holy Land Handicraft Society and the Holy Land Christian Ecumenical Foundation to support the legacy of this traditional art form popular in the Holy Land by creating workshops that are safe for workers and the environment.

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Past Projects

The CRS Fair Trade Fund has been supporting artisans and farmers for over 20 years. Learn more about our past projects below.

Straw Procurement in Ghana

The CRS Fair Trade Fund supported Trade Aid, a non-profit organization created to find employment for the rural poor of northern Ghana. The fund helped women procure straw during their harvest season so that the weavers could have access to straw during the lean season when it became more expensive. The traditional woven baskets are internationally known as Bolga baskets and are widely appreciated for their forms, designs and colorful patterns. The Bolga baskets are usually woven in straw of Vetiver grass, commonly known as elephant grass. Baskets from Trade Aid are available through our partner, Serrv.

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Workshop rehabilitation in Haiti

Strong winds and heavy rain from Hurricane Matthew destroyed homes and businesses throughout Haiti in the fall of 2016. Artisans were especially hit hard losing their workshops and much of their stock and supplies. CRS worked with Comité Artisanal Haitïen to rebuild three fair trade artisan workshops in Petit-Goave and Les Cayes. This funding allowed 35 artists to rebuild or replace damaged structures and purchase new art supplies.

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Coffee Leaf Rust in Mexico

The CRS Fair Trade Fund supported CEPCO, a fair trade coffee cooperative in Oaxaca Mexico to improve soil quality and coffee production practices.  Cooperative members renovated coffee farms affected by coffee leaf rust and planted new rust resistant varieties.  Coffee from CEPCO is available through CRS partner Equal Exchange.

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Mama Tierra

FROM THE HEART OF OAXACA – DESDE EL CORAZÓN  DE OAXACA

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