The TrailBlazers get a graduation shout-out in Fig!

The Fair Trade TrailBlazers are thrilled to have a shout-out in the Spring 2013 issue of Fig Media, PA magazine!  Thank you, Fig, for your kind words and recognizing the hard work of our students for the local Fair Trade community and beyond.  And what an honor it is to be on the same page as Hal Taussig! If you don’t have a paper copy of the issue, flip to page 30 in this electronic version.

Explore the issue online!

2012- A Year to be Thankful

Although the year 2012 has not yet ended, the Fair Trade TrailBlazers of Penn State Brandywine have much to be thankful for this year.

We are thankful for our Penn State Brandywine community that supported us becoming a Fair Trade University.  Without our students, staff, faculty, and alumni taking the time to learn about Fair Trade and agreeing that Fair Trade is significant and important for us to connect with, we would not have been able to establish such a strong community of passionate people that are continuing to educate others and using their purchasing power to make a difference.

We are thankful for Hal Taussig and America’s First Fair Trade Town.  Would Fair Trade even be here without Hal pursuing the idea of bringing Fair Trade Towns to the USA?  Would we have any Fair Trade Towns without Media taking the first steps to gaining the approval?  Would we at Penn State Brandywine have even considered becoming a Fair Trade University if Media wasn’t a Fair Trade Town?  We thank those that are the true “trailblazers” for bringing Fair Trade to America.

We are thankful for the certifiers.  Yes, you may not all get along, but we appreciate the challenges you offer each other.  By keeping the conversation going, it keeps the Fair Trade discussion moving forward.  Fair Trade has come far, but there is still so much further to go.  All movements have growing pains, and we as a university value informative, detailed, constructive, and civil discussions of all sides of the issue of Fair Trade certification.

We are thankful for social media.  OK, so this item may not seem like it fits in with the rest of what we are thankful for.  But if it wasn’t for Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Flickr, etc., we would not have made our initial connections with Fair Trade Campaigns National Coordinator Billy Linstead Goldsmith, or Divine Chocolate’s Amanda White.  We would not be exchanging tweets with Alta Gracia or other Fair Trade supporters from literally across the globe.  Thank you, social media, for allowing our campus to be connected in a global conversation about Fair Trade.

Most importantly, we are thankful for the farmers and the makers of Fair Trade products.  For the people that give so much of themselves to produce food and crafts ethically sourced that benefits not only their communities but our entire planet Earth – thank you for your tireless, beautiful work.


Ten Thousand Villages hosts a Going Bananas Cook-Off

As part of the Go Bananas for Fair Trade campaign, Ten Thousand Villages on State Street in Media, PA, will be hosting a Going Bananas Cook-Off!  During “Second Saturday,” October 13, bakers/chefs are asked to bring their Fair Trade banana creation, made with at least two additional Fair Trade items, to the Ten Thousand Villages store on State Street before 12:30PM.  All entries will be judged between 1PM and 4PM by the staff and store customers based on use of fair trade ingredients, presentation, creativity, and taste.

To learn more, please visit:

To find Fair Trade bananas locally, please visit Whole Foods, Swarthmore Co-op, or Martindale’s Natural Market in Springfield.  Most Sam’s Clubs in Pennsylvania and Delaware also sell Fair Trade bananas.



Celebrating Bastille Day with Media and Cupcakes

This past Saturday, July 14, 2012, the Penn State Brandywine Fair Trade TrailBlazers were excited to join the town of Media in its Bastille Day celebrations. The whole of State Street closed down so that booths could set up and restaurants could set out extra seating. The event kicked off at around 6:30 in the evening with an awards ceremony and a reenactment of the storming of the Bastille. Media presented Penn State Brandywine with a Regional Fair Trade award, and we were honored to accept the award! We also congratulate the other Fair Trade award winners on an awesome job and well done!

We also participated in Ten Thousand Villages in Media’s Fair Trade cooking competition, “Knock Their Block Off,” submitting my famous Fair Trade Vanilla Vegan Chai Cupcakes! Four other contestants entered the competition. Take a look at all of the yummy entries!

Below, you will find some other photos from the event.

Above are Bastille Day actors setting up the main stage at the intersection of State and Olive Streets in Media.

Here we are, Dr. Laura Guertin, Sarah DeMartino, and Louis Donaghue accepting the regional award from Media!

And here are all of us after the award!


Here was something cool we saw! At the Fair Trade (run by Media’s Fair Trade Town Committee) information desk, there was a clothesline with Fair Trade messages hung on it. People could come up and write or draw what Fair Trade meant to them!

All in all, we had a wonderfully fun time in Media and can’t wait for their next event!

For more images of Media’s Bastille day, check out our Flickr page!

-Contributed by Sarah DeMartino, First Fair Trade Intern

A Call To Arms (Or Spatulas): Fair Trade Media Cook-Off

On July 14 the town of Media will be having its “Knock Their Block Off” Fair Trade cooking competition, and Penn State Brandywine is pleased to say that it will be participating. Registration opens up on July 7, and runs until July 11. I, Sarah DeMartino, the infamous Fair Trade Vegan-Chai Cupcake Chef and TrailBlazer, will be participating and representing my Penn State Brandywine community!  I am eager to share my recipe and see what other fabulous entries are submitted!

The event is hosted by Ten Thousand Villages in Media, and all entries must be submitted to the store between noon and 2 p.m. Judging will start at 2 p.m. and end at 5 p.m. Winners will be announced the following day, July 15, on Facebook and in the store, so you don’t need to be at the store in order to win.

Each entry must include at least 2 Fair Trade ingredients, recipes must be typed up, and only non-alcoholic drinks can be submitted. All entries must be labeled with your name!

So, I encourage people to take up their cooking utensils and cook for Fair Trade! I look forward to seeing what other people prepare and good luck to everyone!

-Contributed by Sarah DeMartino, First Fair Trade Intern

Media Fair Trade Town Meeting with FTF, 03/29/12

Thank you so much to Media,PA, (the First Fair Trade town in the U.S.) Fair Trade Committee for thier kind welcoming of the Penn State Brandywine representatives. Renee Bowers (Executive Director) and Madeline Kreider Carlson (Membership & Program Mgr.) of Fair Trade Federation were there to explain how the FTF works to coordinate between FT wholesalers and FT producers and how they keep thier producers current. Very informative and especially a confidence builder in the Fair Trade movement! Bravo!

Contributed by Bryan Marton

Fair Trade pancakes, thanks to Rotary Club of Media

Ticket from Pancake DayThis morning, I started my day by attending the Rotary Club of Media‘s Pancake Day, held at Media Elementary School.  Although many groups in the region have a Pancake Breakfast as a fundraiser, I really like how this one put the “Fair Trade” twist on the event so true to Media’s identity.  For an extra dollar, visitors could get pancakes made with Fair Trade bananas or Fair Trade chocolate chips.  Yummy!

Contributed by Dr. Laura Guertin