Whatever nation wins in the neocolonial land grab, multinational agribusinesses will come out on top. As we saw with the NAFTA in Mexico's designated rural sector, big agriculture's gain is the small indigenous farmer's loss.
The idea of "fair" trade is very appealing, whether confronting the plight of autoworkers in Michigan or farmers in the Third World. Unfortunately, it will be only a small part of any trade solution for the U.S. and the world as a whole.
Hal Taussig will never make Forbes list of highest paid CEO's. It's not that his Philadelphia travel company isn't profitable. It's just that Hal donates every penny of profits to innovative projects that address poverty.
Chocolate being sold in Harry's name is not fair trade. The fair trade label is the most realistic way that we can know that the cocoa farmers were treated fairly, transparently, and with the chance of upward mobility.
The fair trade movement had initially emerged around coffee, cocoa and tea, major commodities whose producers globally routinely suffered from major price fluctuations and exploitative trading practices.