Think BUYcotting rather than boycotting.
That's the idea behind Carrotmob, an initiative that rewards businesses who make the switch to Fair Trade products.
It's the image of the carrot vs. the stick, so using positive reinforcement vs. negative reinforcement to produce change.- Lorissa Kanhai, Fair Trade outreach officer
John McPahail, owner of Jonnies Sticky Buns, has made the pledge to switch all of his chocolate and some of his sugar to Fair Trade. In turn, Fair Trade Manitoba is organizing.
"I see it as a celebration of what a business is currently doing and It's a good way of enticing a business to go even further," McPhail says. He's always been keen on local and organic produce but hadn't really focused on Fair Trade as much. "So this was a good opportunity to sit down with somebody and look at where we are and where we could go."
Fair Trade Manitoba, in turn, is organizing the Carrotmob to support McPhail's commitment.
"The ultimate goal is to bring awareness of Fair Trade to the Manitoba public," she added.
Buying Fair Trade means you are supporting producers in the developing world who pay their workers a fair wage so they can better support their families.
It can be a challenge for smaller businesses to choose Fair Trade, The great thing about the Carrotmob is that McPhail's company is being rewarded with increasing business on the day. "That added revenue can give him the opportunity to make some of these changes more permanent," Kanhai explains.
On Saturday the Carrotmob festivities will spill out into the parking lot near Jonnies Sticky Buns. There will be guest speakers, entertainment, treats and prizes from local businesses like the nearby Liquor Mart, Food Fare and Shoppers Drug Mart -- all Fair Trade, of course.
The Carrotmob takes place Sept. 28 from 11-2 at Jonnies Sticky Buns, 941 Portage Avenue.