About Us Activity Publications Inquiries & Access


Sale of Fair Trade Products at Kiin Festival


Selling fair trade products1

Among events in academic programs for the Kiin Festival on November 3-4, 2018 was the sale of fair trade products on behalf of the NPO Shapla Neer (Citizens’ Committee in Japan for Overseas Support). Shapla Neer supports people struggling with poverty in Bangladesh and Nepal through a range of activities. These include support for education and disaster prevention initiatives, the Sutenai program, which collects unwanted items such as stamps from throughout Japan and converts them into cash to fund the group’s activities, and the sale of fair trade products hand-made by women in Bangladesh and Nepal. Shapla Neer assists people in developing countries to make their own livelihoods. My fellow stallholders and I also take part in practical training at Shapla Neer as part of the NPO Internship Practicum offered in the Liberal Arts program.

In selling fair trade products, the point we most wanted to convey were an understanding of fair trade schemes and an appreciation of who made the products and the methods they used. To do this, we wrote product explanations for display at point of sale. Based on documentation kindly provided to us by Shapla Neer, we summarized the points we particularly wanted to communicate and thought about how to create highly visible point-of-sale information. At the event we encouraged festival visitors to come and look at our products, and lots of people dropped by our stall. When we took the initiative in explaining the fair trade scheme and products many people listened intently, which was worthwhile and kept us energized over the two days.

Selling fair trade products2

We succeeded in selling all our stock. I think this was due not only to all three of us communicating what we had learned as volunteers, the situation in developing countries, and the concept of fair trade, but also to many of the buyers’ ongoing interest in these kinds of international issues. However, I also realized that although many people know the term “fair trade,” they don’t fully understand its significance. So the experience convinced me that we need to learn more as volunteers and clearly communicate the benefits of fair trade, starting with those around us.

I would like to thank all those at Shapla Neer, who have taught us so much about fair trade and other aspects of international cooperation while we have been volunteering there, the Global Collaboration Center staff who supported us and gave us the opportunity to take part in the Kiin Festival, and my fellow stall-holders.

(Akane Simizu, Ami Yamada, Sarara Izumi)

  • このエントリーをはてなブックマークに追加