Ethical Trade Co was founded in 2015 after our founders witnessed firsthand the exploitation that people in Southeast Asia experience. We met companies there that were offering ethical employment opportunities to the people in their communities to prevent further exploitation. Feeling inspired, we set out to provide a marketplace for the products they were making so that they could offer ethical employment to even more people.
As we traveled to meet with suppliers and learned more about the issues surrounding human exploitation, we realized that taking care of those who have already been affected was only a small part of the solution. It is crucial that we remove the circumstances that make people vulnerable to exploitation in the first place. Most situations in Asia, Central America, and Africa are caused by extreme poverty and a lack of safe, ethical employment. The combination of these factors causes a situation in which women are vulnerable to sexual exploitation, like forced prostitution and sex trafficking. By offering safe and steady employment, the companies we support are reducing their communities’ potential to be harmed.
Thank you for joining us in this journey to rid the world of exploitation and give those who are most at-risk the ability to perform safe work and make livable, stable wages. Your purchase directly provides opportunities to men and women across the globe. As you browse our products have a look at the companies we support and “meet” the artisans that you’re empowering as you create a better world through your purchase at Ethical Trade Co.