Student body invited to celebrate at Feb. 7 event in Birch Café
Capilano University has taken another step forward in the name of social and environmental consciousness, thanks to its recent certification under the Canadian Fair Trade Campus program. The announcement comes following months of collaboration between the University’s food and beverage services committee and Chartwells, CapU’s exclusive food services provider through to 2030.
In a media statement released last week, the University commended Chartwells for its commitment toward reaching fair trade designation, and indicated that the move was part of a larger sustainability plan moving forward. “Having our university designated as a Fair Trade campus aligns fully with the vision that we have for our institution, and we hope that this is only a first step in the University’s movement towards making changes to advance and enhance our campus’ ecological and social sustainability,” it read.
The designation makes CapU the 21st fair trade campus in Canada and the fifth in British Columbia, joining the likes of Selkirk College, UNBC, SFU and UBC. An event has been scheduled for February 7, from 11:30 am to 1 pm in the Birch Café, where students, faculty and staff will be welcomed to learn more. There will be a fair trade cake, free samples, product specials, prizes, giveaways and an information booth on site. Celebrity Chef Bal Arneson, of Food Network fame, will be on hand for a ceremonial ribbon cutting.
In order to receive Fair Trade designation, campuses must not only commit to a wider range of ethically-sourced food and beverage offerings, but also an educational component that highlights the impact that responsible buying has on producers and their communities.
“When we talked to the student body about sustainability issues, food and the environment are consistently top of mind,” said the media release. “Our students are engaged and passionate about food on campus. They want to support the University in integrating more environmentally and socially sustainable practices into their purchasing efforts and our food services. Fair Trade certification provides those assurances.”
Fairtrade Canada, the certifying body behind the program, extended its congratulations to the entire campus community. “It is exciting to welcome them into the fair trade family where we work together in achieving fair terms of trade for farmers and workers of the Global South,” said Outreach Manager Mélissa Dubé. “Everyone involved should be very proud of this accomplishment!”
“Fair Trade continues to take hold in Canada, and it’s thanks to Universities such as Capilano,” added Sean McHugh, executive director of the Canadian Fair Trade Network. “The impact that our everyday purchases have on the world are often complicated, as supply chains stretch around the globe. That is what makes this designation and this commitment so exciting, is that through sourcing and selling Fair Trade products, we can be sure that producers on the other end were paid fairly.”
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