Campaign Spotlight: Princeton, New JerseyBy: Guest Blogger, Camila Tellez
Princeton New Jersey was reconnected with the coffee production process with a special visit from Angelino Espinoza, a small coffee producer from Veracruz, Mexico. Espinoza’s visit to Princeton in October 2011, helped the Fair Trade Princeton Steering Committee create excitement in town and provide a face to the campaign. Angelino attended several events in town where he was able to answer questions and present the impact of Fair Trade to consumers.
A Robust Steering Committee
The Princeton Fair Trade Town campaign was launched in the fall of 2010 and was officially declared a Fair Trade Town by Fair Trade Towns USA on December 23rd, 2011. The campaign steering committee is composed of a diverse group of constituents including teachers, activists, students, corporate members and non-profit workers. Camila Tellez, 14, of Princeton Township started the campaign. She was captivated by the notion that Fair Trade is not a donation. It’s trade, not aid. “Fair Trade allows consumers to help producers remain players in the global market. Producers benefit as they are able to send their kids to school, protect the environment and improve their community. Consumers also benefit. They get great products in return” mentioned Tellez in one of the events. Tellez won a 2012 Sustainable Princeton Leadership Award in and presented at their Youth and Yogurt event earlier this year.
Collaborative relationships make for Efficient Campaigns
2011 was a productive year for Fair Trade Princeton. To continue creating awareness in Princeton, members of the committee participated in a variety of events: Fair Trade Towns Conference in Philadelphia, Communiversity, Stuart’s Environmental Day and McCaffrey’s gourmet food showcase. They had a Q&A session at the Environmental Film Festival in the Public Library and celebrated World Fair Trade Day at the Whole Earth Center. The campaign donated, with other vendors, a local, organic, Fair Trade dinner to the Arts Council of Princeton, Dining By Design fundraiser. Several venues in town are now selling Sustainable Princeton’s promotional bag that reminds consumers to BYOB, Buy Local and, last but not least, Buy Fair Trade!
Princeton’s success is based not only on the support of its diverse steering committee, but also on the wide variety of events that they participate in. The steering committee thanks all the generous donations, such as a special Fair Trade Princeton tea blend by Rishi Tea and website design from the local tech company Suretech. Other big donors include: Ten Thousand Villages, Bent Spoon, Whole Earth Center and Kopali Organics.
Please go to www.fairtradeprinceton.org for more information and to contact us.