Small Farmers: Big Change October 14 Virtual Presentation Follow up


Equal Exchange worker-owners Leif Rawson-Ahern and Emily Ambrose engaged 32 participants in a discussion and questions/answers of how Equal Exchange has grown as a worker-owned Fair -Trade organization and how they seek new ways to engage citizen consumers.  Over the next few decades, Equal Exchange intends to engage and collaborate with like-minded partners and stakeholders throughout the Fair-Trade system to continue transforming how business is done.

Some of those like-minded folks participated in this meeting.  Representatives of the co-sponsoring organizations spoke of work and challenges within their groups.  What to do next and how to continue growing connections with represented organizations is an opportunity to be continued. Links to participating organizations and Equal Exchange resources are listed below.

Just Fare Market – Contact Linda Olsen
Fond du Lac County Audubon – Contact Diana Beck
Moraine Park Technical Fair Trade College – Contact Anne Lemke
Sustain Fond du Lac – Contact Mandi Hatch
Fond du Lac Fair Trade Towns – Contact Carol Smith
Congregation of the Sisters of St. Agnes – Contact Sister Ruth Battaglia
Farm2Table Co-op and Café – Michael Ketterhagen
UW Oshkosh – Sustainability Institute for Regional Transformations (SIRT) Contact Brad Spanbauer and check out the SIRT Event Calendar
5-Stones Fox Valley

Resources were shared with people who attended and are made available for you here:

Fair Trade: Meet Your Coffee Farmer Feb. 26 at FDL Library

2014-01-28 15.55.45Your morning coffee has the power to jump-start your day. Those beans – and our decisions made at the grocery store – also exert great power on the farmers and communities that supply them. “Meet Your Coffee Farmer” will be presented at 6:30 p.m. Monday, February 26, at the Fond du Lac Public Library, hosted by Just Fare Market. The program is free; no registration required. Refreshments will be served.

Fair trade, Rainforest Alliance, organic: there are a lot of coffee choices. Anna Snider, an expert on sustainable agriculture, will explain what all those coffee labels mean, and how our purchases impact coffee farmers and the environment. Snider has worked with farmers and agribusiness entrepreneurs across the globe to help them increase their businesses’ sustainability and improve the health of their communities. She wrote her Ph.D. thesis on fair trade and other sustainable coffee certifications in Costa Rica and is working with the board of directors of Just Fare Market, located in Peebles.  Anna is a graduate of Laconia High School.

The Fond du Lac Public Library supports a high quality of life in Fond du Lac through reading, lifelong learning and community involvement. There are two locations: the Main Library downtown at 32 Sheboygan St., and FDLPL Express near Festival Foods at Highways 23 and 151. For more information, visit


Three Fond du Lac businesses have been recognized as a part of the group of Fair Trade Town retailer

Theresa Groskopp, CN, opened Natural Healthy Concepts on 976 E Johnson St, Suite 100 in Riverside Center in July 2017.  Theresa first established a successful nutrition consulting business in Appleton at 310 N Westhill Blvd, Appleton.  She wanted another location within an hour of Appleton and choose Fond du Lac as a progressive city.

One hundred and fifty (150) Fair Trade products are offered between two brands, Dr. Bronner’s and Alaffia.  Both brands have amazing stories about the quality of the product and the depth of their mission and the history of their company.

Dr. Bronner’s, a company with a 150-year history of soap making, is a top-selling soap in the U.S. natural marketplace. Organic and Fair Trade ingredients are used with no synthetic preservatives, no detergents, or foaming agents.  Dr. Bronner’s has created or partnered with Fair Trade and organic projects all over the world: in Sri Lanka for coconut oil, Ghana for palm oil, Palestine and Israel for olive oil, India for mint oil, Ecuador for sugar cane alcohol and palm kernel oil, and Kenya for avocado, tea tree and coconut oils.

Alaffia was founded to alleviate poverty and empower communities in Togo West Africa through the Fair Trade of shea butter, coconut oil and other indigenous resources.  This mission driven company says Alaffia’s success is not simply measured by profit.  They measure their success is measured by empowerment. Empowerment Projects funded by the sales of Alaffia products. All of Alaffia’s projects, including a basket weaving program empower Togolese communities to provide their skills and knowledge to the rest of the world and rise out of poverty.  Click for more details

A customer and Fair Trade advocate, Brenda Schaefer, recommended Annie’s Fountain City Café to be a part of the Fair Trade Town Retail group.  Annie Culver, with the assistance of her husband Gary and daughter Katelyn opened this downtown restaurant and popular meeting place in January of 2016.  She describes running this business as a passion dream and dream come true after the preparation of working in the field, degrees in Culinary Arts and Supervisory Management from Moraine Park Technical College and a Bachelor’s Degree from Marian University.

She knew the elements that would go into her dream business: a welcoming atmosphere, high level of customer service, involvement in the community, locally sourced chemical free food, homemade soups and entrees, extensive scratch cooking and good coffee,

Annie became familiar with Collective Coffee while managing the Blue Goose Café at the Horicon Bank in Fond du Lac.  Collective offers organic and Fair Trade coffee certified by Fair Trade USA form Sumatra, Mexico, Honduras, and Nicaragua.

Another Fair Trade product you’ll find at Annie’s is Steaz iced tea, a Fair Trade green tea from Kenya and with organic Fair Trade sugarcane from Paraguay.  Annie’s has Divine chocolate for sale. Divine is a Fair Trade B Corp which was recently named Best for the World 2017 by Certified B Corporations.  Click for more details

Lois Ronca, opened The Artisan Salon-Barber, with a Fair Trade Flavor.  Lois servers her customers Fair Trade Barissmo coffee and Equal Exchange tea and along with that frequently promotes Fair Trade products and sources to her customers.  Lois acted on a dream to own her own building and with her husband Bob, purchased and renovated a now beautifully fresh and sunny salon at 606 Triangle Road, Fond du Lac.  She rents space to several stylists.  She has placed many Fair Trade art and crafts through-out the business.  The renovation was done to thought for sustainable and upcycled materials.
For more details about these businesses see Find Fair Trade in Fond du Lac.

Fair Trade 101 presentation, exhibit at UW-Fond du Lac

Fair Trade 101 presentation, exhibit at UW-Fond du Lac

Kathleen Stetter presented Fair Trade 101 at Sept. 20 event

‘Stay Out of Traffic’ event to be held March 16


FOND DU LAC – Moraine Park Technical College’s IT and Corrections Club students are partnering with law enforcement and community groups to help local youth “stay out of traffic,” with an event to be held at the Boys & Girls Club of Fond du Lac, 76 W. Second St., at 4:30 p.m. on March 16.

This anti-human trafficking initiative began in October as part of the College’s Fair Trade education efforts, when over 130 participants gathered at Moraine Park’s Fond du Lac campus for “Make Fond du Lac a Traffic Free Zone.” The event was designed to bring awareness to the crime of human trafficking for sex or labor — globally, nationally, statewide and locally.

When the Moraine Park IT and Corrections Clubs students learned about the risks facing youth in the Fond du Lac area, they, too, wanted to make a difference.

Students worked over winter break to come up with a plan, which ultimately included partnering with the Boys & Girls Club; the Fond du Lac Police Department; and Nancy Irizarry-Beachy, the chair of the Wisconsin Anti-Human Trafficking Consortium.

The result of this wide-ranging partnership will be seen in the special event to be held on March 16. Students from Moraine Park’s IT and Corrections Clubs will give presentations to middle and high school youth at 4:30 p.m. Pizza will be provided at 5:30 p.m. by the Kiwanis Club of Fabulous Fond du Lac and Little Caesars. From there, Fond du Lac Police Detective Nick Hahn; officers Keywon Brown and Kristina Meilahn; and Irizarry-Beachy will present to parents and guardians at 6 p.m. The main focus of this educational event will be internet safety and the dangerous online activities that can lead to human trafficking.

The event is free and open to the public. To register, call the Boys & Girls Club of Fond du Lac at 920-924-0530.

Figures on human trafficking globally show that 20.9 million people are victims of forced labor and human trafficking and 5.5 million of those are children.

Sex trafficking of children and youth is growing nationally and in Wisconsin. In the experience of local law enforcement and service providers, sex trafficking of minors is occurring throughout the Fond du Lac area and up and down the Highway 41 corridor. Young people with current or past history of child abuse, being homeless, runaway and not having a good support system are especially at risk.

For more information on the “Stay out of Traffic” event, visit

Scene Magazine – Announcing the Fair Trade Journey

Celebrate Fair Trade Month in October 1-31, 2016

By Carol Smithjfm-journey-ad23

Fond du Lac Fair Trade Town is planning a “round about” way to celebrate Fair Trade Month in Fond du Lac. A short and affordable Fair Trade Journey is offered as you are out and about this October, to ten locally owned shops and cafés who carry some Fair Trade products. They each are highlighting a featured product for you to learn more about Fair Trade around Fond du Lac.

Participating local businesses are the Blue Goose Coffee House at Horicon Bank, Common Grounds Coffee Shop at Marian University, Gallery and Frame Shop, Just B Still Massage Studio and Green Café, Just Fare Market, Living Light Studio, Moraine Park Technical College Bookstore, ReachOut & Solid Grounds Coffee, Urban Fuel and Village Market Specialty Foods. You are invited to visit 5 or more of the 10 retailers.

The Fair Trade Journey theme is “Know Your Producer; Know Your Product.” This theme encourages people to think about where the products come from and the human beings who make them. Although fair trade networks focus mainly on fighting poverty in developing countries the organizers of the event recognize the importance of treating all workers with fairness, including those in the United States.

Journey participants may start at any of the participating businesses, where they will receive a “Fair Trade Passport.” At each stop, participants will be encouraged to look for that venue’s “featured product” and record the product’s name in their passport. Shoppers who find the featured products at five or more shops are invited to leave the completed passport at one of the stores to be entered in a drawing for a gift certificate or prize package. The passports should be completed on or before October 31 and left at one of the participating retailers.

The Fair Trade Journey will begin on October 1 with passports available in the participating stores. The official kick-off will take place at a half day event on the morning of October 8, at Moraine Park Technical College – Fond du Lac Campus. This event is free and open to the public. “How to Make Fond du Lac a Traffic Free Zone,” will focus on how Fair Trade and local agencies and groups are helping to fight the crime of labor and sex trafficking which enslaves women, children and men globally as well as in the US and even Wisconsin.

Make Fond du Lac a Traffic Free Zone. The community is invited to attend this half day event on Oct 8, 2016 at MPTC – Fond du Lac Campus

How to Make Fond du Lac a Traffic Free ZoneFair Trade_human trafficking_email file(2)

Human Trafficking is a crime that that persists globally as well as in Wisconsin and even Fond du Lac.  A free half day conference on Saturday, Oct 8, will address what is being done and how you can help.
Citizens and youth grade 6 and up accompanied by a parent are invited to gather at the MPTC cafeteria for registration beginning at 8:30 am.

Time:  8:30 am – 9:00 am  refreshments available, vendor tables open
              9:00 am -12:00 pm – program described below

Place:  Moraine Park Technical College, 235 N National Ave, FDL


  • Keynote speaker: Elizabeth Marczak, Serrv International, What Fair Trade is Doing to Combat the Global Crime of  Human trafficking
  • Panel Discussion: Fond du Lac’s Efforts to Combat Human Trafficking moderated by Nancy Irizarry, Wisconsin Anti-Human Trafficking Consortium Chair.
  • Panelists are Detective Nick Hahn—Fond du Lac Police Department; Tiffany Parker—Agnesian Domestic Violence; Angel Gilbertson—ASTOP; Nicole Johnson, Executive Director–Solutions Center; Laura Kohl– Assistant District Attorney
  • Interactive “Stay Out of Traffic” experience. This will give opportunity to work through a possible human trafficking scenario by finding resources from local agencies who could help if you were in the situation presented in the scenario.
  • Fair Trade vendors including Just Fare Market, Gallery & Frame and Living Light Studio as well some of the nonprofit partner organizations will have booths to visit.

Organizers are representatives from:

  • AAUW – Fond du Lac Branch
  • Congregation of the Sisters of St Agnes
  • Fond du Lac Fair Trade Towns
  • Just Fare Market
  • Moraine Park Technical College
  • Soroptimist International of Fond du Lac
  • Fond du Lac Area Women’s Fund