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Fair Trade Chocolate for Passover

The Jewish Fair Trade Project

Made up of Equal Exchange, T'ruah, and Fair Trade Judaica

We're proud to offer you the second year of Kosher for Passover and Fair Trade chocolate bars that you may give as a gifts, serve at your family's seder , or sell as a synagogue fundraiser.

You'll find the following information below:

Placing Your Order for Chocolate and Materials

Step 1:
Start by creating a new account or signing into your existing account. You may purchase single bars as an individual customer or order bars wholesale (12 to a case). If you wish to order and get wholesale prices, please make sure to choose "Ordering for your organization?" when you sign up, and enter the name of your synagogue or organization. Once you do this the website will automatically give you wholesale prices for each kind of chocolate when you order by the case. Learn more about our wholesale pricing here.
During the account creation process, you will be asked to select a religious affiliation. Please choose "Jewish" to select the select the Jewish Fair Trade Product. By choosing this project, you will be ensuring that a portion of the sales will benefit the organizations Fair Trade Judaica and T'ruah.
Step 2:
Place your order by clicking on the chocolate varieties below. The following Equal Exchange chocolate products are Kosher for Passover:

Kosher for Passover stickers for the chocolate bars (12 to a page) and 6 educational brochures will be mailed to you with every case of chocolate that you order and will be enclosed in your package. If you need additional stickers and brochures, you may request these items from EE Customer Service at 774-776-7366.

Please Note: Equal Exchange unflavored coffees and teas do not need to be specifically approved as "Kosher for Passover" if purchased before the holiday.

The last day you can place your order and be guaranteed delivery before Passover is March 23rd, 2015.

What is Fair Trade?

Fair Trade is a rapidly growing international movement that puts people first, rather than corporate profits. By purchasing fairly traded products you're helping to secure a better life for farmers and workers in poor countries.

Fair Trade key principles:

  • A fair price that covers the cost of sustainable production
  • An additional Fair Trade premium to be used for community needs
  • No child labor allowed
  • Gender equality
  • Pre-harvest financing
  • Environmental sustainability
  • Safe and healthy work conditions
  • Democratic workplaces and worker independence
  • Transparent management and commercial relations
  • Longer term more direct trading relationships which provide stability for producers

Fair Trade is especially important when it comes to chocolate products. More than 50% of all cocoa is grown in the Cote D'Ivoire (Ivory Coast), where there is documentation of young boys forced to work in the in the cocoa fields. Fair Trade provides third party oversight and policies which reduce the chance of child labor on farms.

What's Jewish about Fair Trade?

  • A key tenet of Judaism is to pursue justice – "Tzedek Tzedek Tirdof" (Deut. 16:20). We can pursue justice by working for economic justice and making consumer choices that promote economic fairness for those who produce the products we use and depend on.
  • The highest form of justice is enabling others to be self-sufficient. According to Maimonides, the great 12th century Jewish scholar, the highest form of tzedakah is entering into a business partnership or giving a person a job so that he or she can become self-sufficient (Laws of Gifts to the Poor 10:7). When we buy Fair Trade products, we are effectively entering into a business partnership with the artisan or farmer, and our partnership supports fair trade producers to lift themselves out of poverty.
  • When goods are produced under unfair conditions, it is as if the livelihood of the producer is being stolen. Where child labor is involved, childhood itself is stolen away. The responsibility does not rest solely with the manufacturer but with us as ethical consumers. Maimonides teaches (in Hilchot G'neivah 5:1): "One may not buy stolen goods from a thief; to do so is a great transgression because it strengthens the hands of those who violate the law and causes the thief to continue to steal, for if the thief would find no buyer he would not steal, as it says, 'He who shares with a thief is his own enemy.' (Proverbs 29:24)"

What Makes This Chocolate Kosher for Passover?

The products offered through this fundraiser (on this website) are soy lecithin-free, meaning that they do not contain any soy products (kitniyot), which are prohibited on Passover for Ashkenazi Jews. Rabbi Aaron Alexander, Associate Dean, Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies at the American Jewish University, has approved them as Kosher for Passover if acquired before bedikat chametz (the night before first seder). They are listed in the Conservative movement’s Passover guide under the category of items that do not need a special Kosher for Passover certification if purchased in advance. They are also vegan and gluten-free.

Why Especially on Passover?

Sanctifying these sacred times of the year by making ethical consumer choices is especially meaningful. The gift of freedom that our people received generations ago, and that we celebrate every Purim, Passover, and Chanukah, bestows upon us the obligation and responsibility to work for the liberation of all people. We are each endowed with "a strong hand and outstretched arms." Let us use them to extend freedom to others.

On Passover, we celebrate our freedom, and we often sweeten the celebration with chocolate. To eat chocolate on Passover knowing that it was likely produced with child labor is a bitter irony. In contrast, eating Fair Trade chocolate on Passover heightens our awareness and also allows us to take action – to vote with our pocketbooks – while also enjoying a treat.

Why T'ruah and Fair Trade Judaica?

T'ruah: The Rabbinic Call for Human Rights is a multi-denominational Jewish movement that mobilizes our network of 1,800 rabbis and cantors, and more than 10,000 American and Canadian Jews, to bring a moral Jewish voice to pressing human rights concerns in North America and Israel. We bring the wisdom of Jewish text and tradition, and the power of the Jewish community, to the sacred work of protecting the human rights and dignity of all people. Our work on Fair Trade emerges from our campaign against modern slavery and human trafficking.

Fair Trade Judaica is building a Fair Trade movement in the Jewish community, linking Jewish values of human dignity, self-sufficiency, and environmental sustainability with Fair Trade standards assuring fair and livable wages, no child labor, and healthy and safe working conditions. We accomplish this through outreach/education, and expanding the production, distribution, and sale of Fair Trade Judaica products.

Resources on Jewish Values, Fair Trade, and Chocolate

A Kavannah (Intention) for Eating Fair Trade Chocolate

Every generation learns that things are more than they seem. This chocolate I hold is more than just chocolate. This is a symbol of potential freedom, a realization that foods that give me delight can be made without child labor. Joy need not be accompanied by pain or oppression. May I experience the sweet flavor of this gift as a hint of the freedom that birthed it. May the world know liberation, one person at a time, mindful act by mindful act, until all people are free.
— written by R. Menachem Creditor, Congregation Netivot Shalom (Berkeley, CA)