by Mary Linnell-Simmons, Acting Director of Marketing, Fairtrade America
First off – GREAT! Bake sales are a fantastic way to raise money for a cause you care about. This tradition of fundraising for an important issue has really stood the test of time. It’s so effective that you’ll hardly see a school, church or community group that doesn't run one. And, when you use Fairtrade ingredients, you double your impact – making sure the farmers who grew them got a fair deal.
Okay, so you want to host a Fair Trade Bake Sale but are unsure where to start. Here are ten steps to get you going.
1. Choose a cause you care about
Maybe your school doesn’t having funding for the arts department (as my son’s doesn’t) and you want your kids to get creative in the classroom. Or, maybe you have a close friend battling a rare disease and you want to help find a cure. Check out our list of suggested charities if you're looking for inspiration.
Whatever your cause is, pick something that you care about that is close to your heart. It makes the hours in the kitchen fly by when thinking that you’re making a difference in this world.
2. Choose a time, date and location for your bake sale
Pick a high-traffic location and a busy time of day – a Saturday afternoon bake sale on busy street will obviously have more visitors than one hosted on a quiet Tuesday morning. If possible, try to schedule you bake sale during another event, like a parade, festival or sports game day, so you know you’ll have lots of guaranteed traffic.
Make sure you add these details to the Fair Trade Bake Sale map so you can join others baking for good! You could even win this Baker's Bundle by signing up!
3. Ask for help
It’s likely that there are others that care about your cause just as much as you do. Ask them for help! Whether they help bake and sell or just research great recipes, all help is good help!
And don’t forget little helpers as well. Teaching kids how to cook and more about where the ingredients come from is a hands-on way to learn.
4. Spread the word!
Get out the word online and offline that you’ll be descending with delicious goodies that do good. We have lots of resources on our Fair Trade Bake Sale website such as dozens of suggested posts for Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, graphics to share or print, and even posters that you can print out and write your details in. Easy peasy!
Post flyers around the area where you’ll be selling a few days before and bring some extra for the day of your event. Since many people don’t have printers these days, make use of the one in your local public library.
5. Instagram-worthy bakes
Say what you will about taking a photo of a perfectly-angled brownie beside a tiny succulent, a notebook and a pen, but the insta-astethic does make things look more delicious.
Don’t worry about such levels of #perfection for your Fair Trade Bakes – just make sure they look good enough to eat – and they will be! Bonus points if you wrap each item before selling it, so that it’s easy for your customers to eat now or later.
Make sure you take photos and tag #FairTradeBakeSale – bonus points if you shout out the ethical ingredients you used to make it easy for others to find Fairtrade products.
6. Set your price (or just forget it all together…)
Make sure you clearly mark prices, have a blanket price (say, $2 per item) or set a 'donate-what-you-think-it’s-worth' price. It might feel a bit risky but you’d be amazed how generous people can be when the decision is left up to their own conscience...
7. Get thirsty
Know what goes great with cake? Brown liquids!
Fairtrade coffee and tea can make a great addition to your bake sale and can be an easy way to raise extra funds.
8. Share pictures!
You can inspire others to get out and do good in the world. Make sure you tag any photos you post online with #FairTradeBakeSale and follow us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter – we love to share photos of amazing people like you!
9. Donate your earnings
By check, online, or in cash – donate the funds you raised to your chosen cause. Many non-profits love to know why you went out of your way to give them money, so tell them your story.
10. Bask in the glow of your awesomeness
Well done! You’ve run a successful Fair Trade Bake Sale – you brought together friends and family to double your impact by raising money for a cause you care about all while making sure farmers get fair deal. Crack open a bottle of bubbly – you deserve it!
Have another tip? Write it in the comments below!