By Katie Dougherty
PBN Contributing Writer
PROVIDENCE – In 2011, consumers around the world spent $6.6 billion on Fairtrade certified products, a 12 percent increase over the pervious year, according to a report by nonprofit Fairtrade International.
Nearly 27,000 products bear the Fairtrade certification mark, including the world’s first and only fair trade chewing gum, Glee Gum.
Providence-based Glee Gum is one of the only chewing gums that uses cane sugar instead of artificial sweeteners and meets the social, economic and environmental standards set by Fairtrade International.
All six flavors of the gum – peppermint, cinnamon, bubblegum, tangerine, triple berry and spearmint – were recently certified as part of the certification mark’s launch in the U.S.
Fairtrade International oversees an alternative system of global trade and pays 1.2 million farmers and workers a fair price for their products, regardless of changes in the market.
“It’s exciting to be at the forefront of a growing movement,” Deborah Schimberg, founder and president of Glee Gum manufacturers Verve Inc., said in a statement.
“The more that shoppers demand ethically sourced goods, the better our global marketplace becomes and the prouder we feel to be a part of it,” added Schimberg. “Every day it gets easier to make conscientious choices about what we buy—and what we chew!”