Beans and Gems: What do these two have to do with the COVID-19 Virus?

Few people know that I (Eric) am also a partner in an agricultural company in Eastern Washington with my brother. It is this company that really funded our efforts to develop a traceable, responsibly produced, gemstone supply chain for Columbia Gem House. We never would have made it without those beans. 

As you know in todays environment many employees are going to have a difficult time in the coming months. Also, there are a lot of empty shelves in many food stores.

Our seed company got a call from a local citizen asking to buy some beans to give out to other members of the community, just to help them out. Beans are one item that is in short supply in stores. The answer was We do have beans we can get to you, but they are not for sale. They are for donating.” There was another person that called and wanted to pay, but the answer was still the same. "Available for free but not for sale." A compromise was reached. There would be a cash donation to a local charity in the amount the beans were worth. People in their communities wanting to help others in a time of need, and we see this happening all over.

These are extraordinary times, and we all have ways we can help out our community. We challenge you to see what you have to offer yours. To us, this is what responsible sourcing and fair trade really means; do what you can to help others, whatever form that might take.

Be safe and healthy.


Eric Braunwart