If you want to tell the stories of women in our food and farming systems, it’s not just a story of headlines and figureheads. Often, women are the ones who sort the coffee, cut up the fruit, save the seeds, and all the unseen tasks that feed the world. We asked our staff and editorial board to share some of their favorite products that fit with this issue’s theme. Women-grown,
women-made, women-owned: the resulting products tell the stories of the myriad ways that women are involved in supply chains around the globe.
Find them online or at your favorite natural food store!
CANAAN FAIR TRADE MAFTOUL (COUSCOUS)
This couscous is a favorite of mine, as its pearls are much larger, giving it real texture yet remaining light and fluffy. When I lift the lid off the pot, I breathe in deeply. I feel the warm Middle Eastern sun, smell the fresh organic farm air, imagine the ancient olive groves, and taste the Mediterranean Sea. My favorite way to eat it is as a side salad, mixed with fresh parsley, tomatoes and lemon dressing, making a fresh-tasting and healthy dish, packed full of protein. Couscous is made from wheat that is boiled, sun-dried and rolled – and Canaan’s couscous is extra-special because it is made by a women-owned cooperative in Palestine. – STUART
DIASPORA CO. TURMERIC
Turmeric rice is one of my favorite pairings with a homemade Indian meal, and this organic turmeric takes the dish to the next level – not only does it impart the trademark yellow color, it perfumes my kitchen with its fresh, earthy yet floral smell. While the turmeric is amazing and the packaging is cute, what first drew me in is their mission: a queer, woman-of- color-owned business “here to put money, equity and power in the hands of Indian farmers, and to disrupt and decolonize a colonial, outdated commodity spice trading system that profits only the trader.” – ANNA
DIVINE’S DARK CHOCOLATE HAZELNUT TRUFFLE
Divine Chocolate’s label stands out on the shelf and stops me in my tracks. The sophistication of the packaging design matches the sophistication of the flavor of their fair trade chocolate. My favorite is their Dark Chocolate Hazelnut Truffle, suitable for vegans, so I can show my compassion for animals and farmers at the same time! Moreover, Divine Chocolate is co-owned by the 85,000 farmer members of Kuapa Kokoo, the cooperative in Ghana that supplies the cocoa for each bar they make. As owners, they get a share in the profits, a say in the company, and a voice in the global marketplace. The label emphasizes the organizing power of women cocoa farmers. It reads: “Hear our voice!” Well, I’m listening! – FLETCHER
EQUAL EXCHANGE DRIED MANGOES
These delicious organic mangoes are grown by farmer cooperatives in Burkina Faso, and processed in a facility run almost entirely by women. This project is such a good example of how fair trade supports producers doing more processing activities— and earning more money—in their communities. Naturally sweet but with a touch of tartness, they are so easy to eat—one of my favorite hiking snacks or a nice afternoon treat. – KERSTIN
TRIBE ALIVE FOLDOVER CLUTCH
I love that this clutch is so versatile: it can be worn as a bag, or the strap can be removed and then can be carried as a clutch. The patterns are also versatile and can be swapped around, making this a multi-use product. And, even more importantly, Tribe Alive is women-owned, women-designed and women-made by fair trade artisan projects around the world. This clutch was made by a foundation working with Mayan women in the highlands of Guatemala who focus on traditional backstrap weaving that provides artisan training and capacity building as well as scholarships for the weavers’ children. – DANA