It is the season of Lent, a time when Christians traditionally reflect on the message of Easter.
Many denominations fast during this time.
Some give the money they have saved to the poor.
I go to a Baptist Church. We are not doing Lent (heaven forbid that we would be involved in something so ecumenical)! But we are doing a programme called 50:50. Which has a strong social justice focus – I have found myself really challenged by it.
Last week we had a message about consumption. The speaker challenged us to: Consume fairly; Consume ethically and Consume sustainably.
We were given a huge wad of information.
We were then encouraged to make small steps.
The two products that grabbed my attention most keenly were: chocolate and coffee.
My two vices – my two favourite things (apart from Andrew, of course)
These primary products for coffee and chocolate are cultivated primarily in developing nations. Child slavery is common. People are paid an unfair price for their beans. We saw a DVD on some Fair Trade companies.
It was inspiring.
This week I changed my coffee brand to Fair Trade. I am also looking at alternative chocolate sources. A student who is doing a placement at World Vision explained that Cadbury UK are committed to sourcing Fair Trade cocoa beans.
I Googled Cadbury Fair trade and found this link:
The opening message was as follows:
"100 years ago William Cadbury chose beans from Ghana. A year ago we founded the Cadbury Cocoa Partnership. And from Autumn 2009 Cadbury Dairy Milk will be Fairtrade certified. Welcome aboard."
Let’s hope Cadbury Australia will follow suit.
Imagine eating chocolate guilt free. I could get religion on that!
In the meantime, we can put the pressure on our supermarkets to stock Fair Trade coffee and chocolate, in fact, Fair Trade everything … Apparently Coles supermarkets stock Fair Trade Chocolate. I couldn’t find any at Safeway (and I searched pretty desperately).
I haven’t tried my Fair Trade coffee, yet. I am still finishing my previous, before-I-got-religion, packet. But last night, Andrew asked me what I was going to do if it didn’t taste nice.
‘Hey, this is religion,' I said. 'I’m not even going to think about it.'
I have blind unquestioning faith.