30 years ago today, the world’s first International fair trade certification was launched uniting producers and labeling initiatives across Europe, Asia, Latin America, North America, Africa, Australia and New Zealand behind the Max Havelaar Foundation plan in the Netherlands. Last year, ethical sales of global Fairtrade products rose by 8 percent to nearly $9.2 billion, generating more than $193 million for farmers and co-ops, with products in the U.S. like coffee, cocoa, and bananas seeing growth of 24%, 33%, 51%. SEE more impressive facts… (1988)

One of the most recognizable labels, Fairtrade International (and Fairtrade America), appears on more than 30,000 products sold in over 150 countries, helping improve the sustainability of their entire supply chain. There are currently more than 1.6 million farmers and workers in various certified organizations across 75 countries.

The Fairtrade movement is particularly popular in the UK, where there are 500 Fairtrade towns, 118 universities, over 6,000 churches, and over 4,000 schools registered. The US now ranks as the third largest market for Fairtrade goods behind the United Kingdom and Germany.

MORE Good News on this Date:

  • A new presidential republic was launched after Brazil‘s military overthrew the emperor (1889)
  • The first assembly of the League of Nations in Geneva (1920)
  • The cornerstone of the Jefferson Memorial was laid (1939)
  • A quarter million peaceful protesters rallied against the Vietnam war (1969)
  • Palestinian Independence Day is celebrated, commemorating the day the Palestinian National Council declared itself a state (1988)
  • The Space Shuttle Atlantis launched its first flight (1990)
  • Baseball players and owners agreed on a tougher steroids-testing policy (2005)
  • The Occupy Wall Street Project, Strike Debt, launched the Rolling Jubilee project to buy up Americans’ debt for pennies on the dollar through the “secondary debt market”, and in its first year has erased almost $15 million in anonymous personal debt (2012)

And, Happy 78th Birthday to Sam Waterston, the stage and film actor noted for his performance in The Killing Fields (1984), for which he received an Academy Award nomination, and his role in Law & Order, which earned him both Golden Globe and SAG Awards.Sam Waterston-small

He continued his quietly charismatic and unfailingly solid performances in HBO’s The Newsroom, and recently brought his distinctive comedy to the Netflix comedy, Grace and Frankie. (1940)

And on this day in 1887, the artist Georgia O’Keeffe was born in a farmhouse in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin.

For her paintings of enlarged flowers, skyscrapers in New York, and New Mexico landscapes. she has been called the “Mother of American modernism.” SEE her paintings in a 3 minute video.

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