FAIR Talks Podcast

FAIR Talks Podcast is LIVE  🎧

Subscribe & Listen now.

Apple Podcast | Spotify | Google Podcast | Podbean


FAIR Talks Podcast Description:

How do I make a difference in the world? What can I do to help end human trafficking? What are sustainable solutions to ending global poverty? How can I be a part of the solution and not part of the problem?

Whether you are trying to be a conscious consumer or start your dream business or nonprofit to solve some of the world’s biggest problems, we’re here to help.

The FAIR Talks Podcast educates everyday people for extraordinary change. Together, we’ll be diving into fair trade, sustainability, and working effective solutions to tackle some of the world’s biggest problems. From combatting human trafficking to what coffee to drink, we are going to cover the ‘who, ‘how, and ‘why’ all the topics about the people behind the products we buy every day. You’ll hear from industry experts, social entrepreneurs, and fellow world changers with experience working on the ground from some of the world’s most difficult places. Be inspired with actionable steps and tips to help you make better daily decisions to create extraordinary change.

Podcast is officially dropping March 30th, 2022.

Read our full press release.

. . .

About The Podcast Host:

Elisha Chan is the Executive Director of Fair Trade LA and the host of the FAIR Talks Podcast: educating everyday people for extraordinary change. She is also the founder of Impactful Missions, a nonprofit dedicated to ending poverty through job creation, education, and empowerment. She found her passion while traveling on many Haiti trips as a student at UCLA and started her social enterprise, Impactful Market, six months after she graduated. She currently works with many artisans and producers throughout Haiti, while giving back to a small village called Fond Doux, Haiti. She has established a Scholarship Program that has given over 345 scholarships, sending underserved youth to school, from preschool to university. Now, she is building a Leadership Academy and Trade School in Haiti from the grounds up. A passionate advocator of establishing long-term solutions to break the cycle of poverty.



 Show Notes:

Ep 01: Building Farmer Capacity | Fair Trade USA

Nathalie Marin-Gest, Senior director of producer services at Fair Trade USA, chats with Elisha about her background, journey, and how her work supports equity and justice for farmers and producers. She describes the similarities between her department’s functions and Julia Child’s first cookbook, and the importance of focusing on the human side of production in building better systems. Their conversation explores how to build capacity, collect information, and calibrate programs to benefit those most directly affected. 

Learn more at www.fairtradeusa.org 

Ep 02: Creating a Worker-Led Fashion Future | Garment Worker Center

This week, Elisha talks to two leaders from the Garment Worker Center in Los Angeles - Nayantara Banerjee (industry research and strategic partnerships) and Francisco Tzul (garment maker and organizer). Francisco shares personal hardships he’s endured in his career as a garment maker and what motivates him to work for industry-wide change. Nayantara describes the history of the Garment Workers Center, how SB62 (the Garment Worker Protection Act) can change the future of the fashion industry, and why “Made in America” doesn’t always mean sweatshop-free production. Both share inspiring tips for consumers to wear their values.

Learn more at www.garmentworkercenter.org

Watch Made In LA Documentary

Email Nayantara at nayantara@garmentworkercenter.org

Ep 03: How to Revolutionize Your Closet | Fashion Revolution USA

If you wear clothing, this episode is for you! Elisha talks with Shannon Welch, Director of Strategic Initiatives and Creative Partnerships for Fashion Revolution USA, about the history of labor and environmental abuses in the fashion industry. They dive into the origins of Fashion Revolution and discuss how their work for greater transparency in fashion supply chains could fundamentally change the industry. Shannon highlights how big brands adopting fair trade makes an impact at scale, how the hashtag #30wears relates to buying clothes, and shares suggestions to create a fashion revolution in your own closet.

Learn more at www.fashionrevolution.org

Watch The True Cost Documentary

Term "Cost Per Wear" from The Conscious Closet by Elizabeth Cline

GCNYC Course on Sustainable Fashion

NY Fashion Act Bill

Ep 04: Fighting for a Fairer World | Paul Rice

This week Elisha dives into a rich conversation with Paul Rice, founder & CEO at Fair Trade USA. They discuss Paul’s entry into the world of fair trade and how that ignited his passion to grow the movement in the United States. Paul explains how fair trade creates a win-win scenario for companies and farmers by creating new shared value and through fostering equitable trade partnerships, not dependence on charity. He highlights the ways fair trade collectives invest resources into their communities for stability and wellbeing. Plus, how the fair trade symbol became synonymous with high quality products and a special call to action to support fair trade pilot programs in your area! 

Learn more at www.fairtradeusa.org

2021 Consumer Insights Report

Pilot Program: From May to July 2022, shop Fair Trade tomatoes at Ralph's grocery stores (part of the Kroger family) across Los Angeles!

Ep 05: The Difference Between Fair Trade & Charity | The Little Market

Doug Lapp, the Artisan Relations and Supply Chain Senior Strategist of The Little Market, shares his journey as a fair trade buyer and building artisan relationships. He breaks down the differences between fair trade, charity, and mainstream models of business, and explains the positive potential impacts in children’s lives that fair trade offers. Finally, Doug and Elisha discuss the importance of changing how the fair trade world can better communicate the multiple layers of value embedded in fair trade.

Shop at www.thelittlemarket.com 

Enjoy 10% off with code FAIRTALKS10! Limited time only!

Shop Kantha Quilts & Sugar Scrub by In-House Production Team

Ep 06: How Hand Embroidery Creates Financial Independence for Refugees | Neococo

Are hand embroidery, fashion, refugee resettlement, and women’s empowerment connected? This week’s guest will tell you how! Amrita Thadani shares how her background in fashion design and volunteer experience with refugee resettlement led her to start NEOCOCO, a social impact brand equipping women for financial independence through community, femininity, and hand embroidery. She highlights the ways embroidery acts as a cultural and family connector, as well as a therapeutic act. Elisha and Amrita explore how fair and dignified employment provides a firm foundation for women refugees building a new life, and how fair trade businesses can get involved in the refugee crisis.

Shop at neococo.com 

Enjoy 10% off with code NEO10 at checkout!

Shop Formation Tee & Refugees Are Courageous Tee

Learn more about International Rescue Committee (IRC)

Ep 07: How Dinosaurs Keep Fair Trade From Extinction | Ten Thousand Villages

This week Elisha talks with Mary Lampmann about the collaboration between Ten Thousand Villages and Jurassic World: Dominion. They discuss the crossover of themes like preservation of culture, sustainability, and women’s empowerment. Mary also shares how the artisan partners have scaled their operations and market reach with this partnership, and the ways that will impact these communities for years to come. Finally, she shares the one thing that citizens can do that mean the most to any fair trade organization to build a fairer world. 

Jurassic World x Accompany Collection

Shop Online @ tenthousandvillages.com

Stores in the Los Angeles Area:

Ten Thousand Villages Redondo Beach – 1907 S Catalina Ave, Redondo Beach

Ten Thousand Villages Pasadena – 567 S Lake Ave, Pasadena

Bonus: Hong Kong to Haiti - Global Impact Made Personal

Join us for a special bonus episode before the launch of our fall season! Listen as our Executive Director and host of this podcast, Elisha share her personal journey with fair trade - from her first trip to Haiti during college to building a social enterprise aimed at eliminating poverty that’s given away over 345 scholarships to send children to school. She recounts powerful stories of the impact of ethical employment and teases about big changes to come for her business!

Shop at Impactful Market | Take 35% off the entire site with code: SUMMERSALE | Ends 9/11 11:59PM PST

Sponsor A Student in Haiti Here (Starting at $10/month)

Ep 08: Housing, Wellbeing, and Social Impact | Downtown Women’s Center, Los Angeles

This week Elisha chats with Joe Altepeter and Alexandria Pineda from the Downtown Women’s Center, the only organization in Los Angeles exclusively serving and empowering women experiencing homelessness. Learn more about this incredible organization from its audacious inception to their vision to see every woman housed and on a path to personal stability. Alex shares her journey from bartending and serving in the Air Force to her current role as lead trainer in the transitional jobs program and head of production for the DWC home and gift collection. Joe explains how the social impact arm of the DWC invests time and money back into the local economy. Their conversation highlights the ways COVID, race, class, and gender disproportionately affect BIPOC women’s opportunities for safe housing, and how housing is a prescription for health. 

Shop at madebydwc.com

Enjoy 20% off with code FAIR2022 at checkout! exp. 10/14/22

Learn more about Downtown Women's Center

EP 09: Spilling the Tea: How Products with Purpose Build Resilient Communities | Sarilla

Pour yourself a warm beverage and settle in for this conversation with Sara Delaney, founder of Sarilla. She and Elisha discuss Sarilla’s evolution from equipping social service workers to provide healing & resiliency training models drawn from Rwandan culture to the development of the social impact business and why they chose tea over coffee as their hero product. Sara shares why loose leaf tea is better quality and better for the environment. Their conversation ends with the ways product certifications like fair trade or women-owned can help consumers make decisions and build trust with a brand. 

Shop drinksarilla.com

Enjoy 15% off with code: FAIRTALKS15 at checkout!

Shop Tulsi Lime Infusion

Learn more about Africa Healing Exchange

EP 10: Investing in the Future: Providing Economic Opportunities to Women for a Better World | Child's Cup Full

In this episode, Elisha chats with Dr. Janette Habashi who shares her journey from growing up in Jerusalem to founding a nonprofit providing refugee and low-income artisans training and job opportunities to create lasting economic growth for Palestinian women. She shares some joys and challenges in creating a worker training program and shipping products around the world, and why it’s important for the artisans to feel a strong sense of ownership in the production process. Finally, Dr. Habashi names one simple act every citizen can do that has far-reaching effects.

Learn more about Child's Cup Full

Enjoy 15% off with promo code: FAIRTALKS at Zeki Learning and Darzah!

Shop Calendar by Zeki Learning, Fabric Market Tote and Mules by Darzah.

EP 11: The Power of Data and Impact Measurement in Fair Trade | Fair Trade USA

Have you ever wondered how fair trade programs measure their success and impact? If so, join Elisha and this week’s guest on a deep dive into data analytics, key performance indicators, and robust measurement systems. Andrea Bassetti, Impact Research and Analysis Manager at Fair Trade USA guides us through the definition of greenwashing and how to avoid the companies’ engaging in these practices, what makes the Fair Trade certification stand out, and one qualitative data point from a recent study that surprised their team. Finally, Andrea shares the importance of data transparency to drive meaningful change for both consumers and certification bodies. 

Learn more about Fair Trade USA's Theory of Change

EP 12: Dressing for Change: Supporting Trafficking Survivors Through Education & Advocacy | Dressember

How can every-day citizens support human trafficking survivors around the world? This week’s episode shares a place to start. Elisha chats with Blythe Hill, the founder of the Dressember movement to raise awareness and funding for anti-trafficking programs across the world. They dive into Dressember’s history, the four foundational pillars of their anti-trafficking work, and why effective solutions must be survivor-led. Finally, Blythe shares tangible actions that anyone can take to support healing and security for trafficking survivors.

Learn more about Dressember

Ethical Fashion Directory

Things Survivors Wish You Knew, A Dressember Podcast

Dressember's 10th Year Anniversary Kick-Off Party


EP 13: Rooted in Love: How to Grow a Healthy Business & Maintain Relationships | The Tote Project

Friendship, fair trade, and freedom for trafficking survivors?! Yes please! Join us for a conversation with the founders of The Tote Project as they share their journey to launching an anti-trafficking business while maintaining a strong friendship. Fay and Michelle share how they’ve grown their business on fair trade principles, streamlined how they educate customers about human trafficking, and how they keep going on tough days. Finally, they share poignant advice for running a business with a friend and staying flexible through life’s challenges and transitions.

Enjoy 20% off with promo code: FAIRTALKS at The Tote Project

EP 14: From Soil to Sale: Building a Fair Trade Supply Chain | Gallant International

From managing a travel agency to building a global fair trade business, this week’s guest will inspire and empower you to build a better world! Vik Giri from Gallant International shares why he chose to invest the profits from his family business in scaling their fair trade impact and how consumer demand for ethical & organic products directly impacts fair wages for producers. Specializing in certified organic & regenerative organic cotton products made in Fair Trade Certified™ factories in India, he highlights why investing in people and ethical supply chain practices is one of the best ways to strengthen a business. He gives insight into how fair trade businesses were able to treat their workers better and experience less disruption during the pandemic. 

Learn more about Gallant International

For Wholesale/Custom Order Inquiry, email gallant@gallantintl.com

BONUS: Celebrating Five Years of Fair Trade Growth | Elisha Chan

It’s time for a bonus episode! Join us as we reflect on the last five years of the fair trade movement, both here in Los Angeles and around the world. Elisha shares some incredible highlights from Fair Trade LA’s five-year report and the growth of consumer demand for fairly made products. Plus, stay tuned to the end of the episode for a big announcement about Fair Trade LA’s future projects!

Read Fair Trade LA's Five Year Report


EP 15: Relationships Built on Trust: Empowering Women Through Fair Trade | Fair Anita & Fair Trade Federation

How can fair trade economically empower women and communities? In so many ways! Join Elisha as she chats with Joy McBrien, founder of the social enterprise Fair Anita, about her path towards entrepreneurship and the powerhouse women she met along the way. Joy shares the sobering connection between financial insecurity and domestic abuse, how Fair Anita incorporates women’s empowerment into their business model & reporting structures, and the importance of centering their makers in the design process. Finally, Joy also shares how joining a network like the Fair Trade Federation helped her business thrive and grow.

Enjoy 10% off with promo code: FTLA at Fair Anita!

Fair Trade FederationFair Trade Federation Conference and Expo | If you are a FTLA or FTLB member, email us at hello@fairtradela.org for your 20% OFF discount code.

EP 16: How Fair Trade Flowers Bring More Power to Workers | Florecal

Stop and smell the fair trade roses! This week’s conversation goes behind the scenes of Florecal, an established fair trade flower producer. Our guest, Jaime, shares why Florecal’s location in Ecuador is perfectly situated for growing flowers and how the government works with producers to create a healthy, equitable working environment. He describes the different kinds of programs that support their employee’s holistic wellbeing and how shifting mindsets helped their employees embrace fair trade practices. Finally, Jaime gives profound examples showcasing why fair trade is a vehicle for social wellbeing.

Learn more about Florecal

Want to sell Fair Trade Flowers? Email Jaime at gerencia@florecal.com.

EP 17: One Stop Swap: How Sharing Clothing Supports a Circular Fashion Future | Swap Society

This week we’re diving into the world of sustainable fashion! Join Elisha as she learns about the power of clothing swaps from Nicole Robertson, founder of Swap Society. Nicole shares the pitfalls of fast fashion, what it actually means to ‘swap clothing’, and why she believes it’s a game changer for your closet. She shares some practical tips for hosting your own clothing swap and envisions what the future of conscious fashion might become.

Enjoy 20% off your membership with exclusive discount code: FAIRTALKS20 at Swap Society!

Fashion Revolution Week | April 22nd - 29th, 2023

Rana Plaza Collapse | International Labour Organization 

EP 18: How Fair Trade Fights Economic Hardship and Fosters Abundance | GOEX Apparel

Continue learning about fair trade fashion in honor of Fashion Revolution Month! Elisha chats with Jessica Ray, Executive Director at GOEX Apparel, a fair trade apparel manufacturer in Haiti, about her journey from high-end luxury retail to ethical fashion. Jessica shares how the fair trade community fosters an abundance mindset and specific lessons the fair trade world can apply to scale our businesses and impact. She details how GOEX Apparel has transformed from its early days into a factory that employs over 77 people full-time while reducing the carbon footprint of their fabric. Both Jessica and Elisha share their experiences building businesses in Haiti and the importance of investing in and prioritizing holistic wellbeing in the workplace. 

Enjoy 30% OFF your purchase at GOEX Apparel with exclusive discount code: FAIRTALKS30

Want to order custom shirts? Custom wholesale order

GOEX Account Manager Job Opening

EP 19: Get to Know Us! A Fireside Chat with Fair Trade LA Board Members

In this intimate episode, Elisha chats with four Fair Trade LA board members about their paths towards fair trade. They share creative tips for finding like-minded folks passionate about social & environmental justice in your local community and how to build a fair trade community from the ground up. Plus, hear step by step tips for creating and promoting events and how to share sobering information with infectious enthusiasm. Our board members offer resources for starting a fair trade campaign, how our nonprofit is structured, why we fundraise, and where donation dollars go to make the most impact for a better world.

Donate | FAIR Package | Coffee Subscription | Membership

Follow us on social @FairTradeLA | Instagram / Facebook

Ad Sponsorship | Email us at hello@fairtradela.org

EP 20: Investing Forward Using Traditional African Values and Fair Trade Practices | Alaffia

Enjoy this insightful conversation with Olowo-n’djo Tchala, founder and CEO of Alaffia! He shares with Elisha the process of how he started fair trade cooperatives to support farmers & makers to employ their vast knowledge to create excellent products while protecting the power of collective bargaining. He shares the process of bringing traditional African values and knowledge to fair trade and why it’s important to consider the production structure of our goods, not just the materials. Learn how implementing an ‘investment forward’ strategy creates a more stable community future. Finally, he shares the challenges and opportunities for adapting policies and certification standards shaped by Western belief systems into local community contexts and the impact of adapting key elements of a community-centered model so that more people can gather under the fair trade umbrella.

Enjoy 15% OFF your purchase at Alaffia with exclusive discount code: FAIRTRADELA

EP 21: Who Benefits from Fair Trade? A Day in the Life Episode | Impactful Missions

Ever wondered what a typical day is like for someone who benefits from a fair trade enterprise? Join Elisha for a special episode with Daniel Sainnatus, a local leader in Haiti working to foster change. He shares how education has impacted what he believes is possible and the lessons he’s learned from starting a business, while also highlighting the ways that fair trade businesses have given him opportunities that wouldn’t otherwise be available to him. He describes what an average day in a local village is like and the challenges of finding water, electricity, and other basic needs. Finally, Daniel and Elisha discuss why it’s so important for him to stay in Haiti and bring change to his village.

Build a Well + Invest in the future of Haiti @ Impactful Missions

Shop Haitian Products @ Impactful Market

EP 23: Keeping the ‘Art’ in Artisan: Elevating Craftsmanship in Fair Trade Products | Matr Boomie

Welcome back to another season of the Fair Talks podcast! Today’s guest, Manish Gupta, shares his journey from majoring in chemical engineering to co-founding a powerhouse global fair trade brand - Matr Boomie. He tells Elisha about the companies’ commitment to partnering with at-risk communities and how those artisan groups have evolved since working with fair trade. They dissect the importance of quality control, why emphasizing artisan’s artistry matters for high-quality products, and how to bring that same quality into every aspect of a fair trade business. Finally, Manish shares just how transformative self-confidence can be for their artisan partners.

Enjoy 20% OFF your purchase at Matr Boomie with exclusive discount code: FTLA (Valid until 12/31/23)

EP 23: Bringing the Ocean to the Starfish: How to Create a Thriving Enterprise for Survivors | Starfish Project

In this episode, Elisha talks with Jenny McGee about her journey from a small town in Indiana to launching a nonprofit to support survivors of human trafficking in Southeast Asia. She talks about the importance of developing survivor leadership in all areas of their business, not just production, to foster a different future for themselves. Jenny also shares how the Starfish Project builds a culture of trust across cultural differences and emphasizes the need for a team-oriented mindset that prioritizes each person’s gifts over their educational background.

Take $10 OFF your purchase at Starfish Project with exclusive discount code: FAIRTRADELA10 (Valid until 12/31/23)

EP 24: All Treats, No Tricks: Tony’s Chocolonely’s Mission to Transform the Chocolate Industry | Tony's Chocolonely

We’ve got a sweet treat for you today! Hear from Abigail Noel Davison at Tony’s Chocolonely about the company’s fair trade chocolate journey. She shares with Elisha how storytelling and raising awareness about human rights issues in the chocolate industry is baked into their branding and production decisions. They also talk about how addressing child labor directly and compassionately with producer groups leads to stronger supply chain relationships. Finally, Noel shares some encouraging and systemic changes that have happened in the West African cocoa industry in the last 20 years.

Customize your own chocolate bar wrapper here!

Shop Tony's Chocolonely

EP 25: Making Tea Time Fair Trade: Working with Small-Holder Farmers for Better Tea and a Better World | JusTea

Calling all tea-lovers! We’ve got a flavor-packed episode for you today. Elisha is joined by Paul Bain, founder and CEO of JusTea, to talk about their fair trade partnerships with small-holder Kenyan tea farmers. Paul describes how they were able to set up tea cottages after working to enact legislative change in Kenya and why they’ve worked with women’s cooperatives right from the start of the business. He also shares a surprising fact about where tea comes from and why purple tea is so rare. Finally, Paul talks about why getting JusTea fair-trade certified was so important to the foundation of their business.

Enjoy 15% OFF your entire purchase with promo code FAIRTRADELA15 at JusTea.com

EP 26: Choosing Fair Trade is a Shoe-in! | The Root Collective

Put on your dancing shoes–we’ve got a special treat for you today! Bethany Tran of the Root Collective walks us through the process of making fair trade shoes, from how the soles are developed to sourcing their materials. She also shares why the company made the switch to pre-orders for their shoes and how they incorporated pre-loved shoes into their overall business model. Finally, Bethany and Elisha highlight challenges facing small fair trade brands in a tough economy and share practical ways customers can support their favorite companies.

Enjoy 20% OFF your entire purchase with promo code FAIRTRADELA at therootcollective.com

EP 27: Building Hope: How a Direct, Fair Trade Model Fosters Mutual Flourishing

Trade in your cynicism for some hope in this heartwarming conversation with Gretchen Huijskens, founder and CEO of Trades of Hope. She shares with Elisha her journey transitioning Trades of Hope from a charity to a direct sales model and how that benefits both the artisans and the sellers. Gretchen highlights her hopes for her new book and how she hopes Trades of Hope will expand in the future. Finally, they both share about how their work in Haiti and the importance of long-term economic solutions to grow a brighter future.

Enjoy FREE SHIPPING with code: FAIRTRADELA when you shop at TradesofHope.shop (ends 12/31/24)