We buy the majority of our products directly from the Artisans and Craftsmen in the source country. We try to maintain very low operational costs; for example we handle all shipping and transportation ourselves; wherever possible we reuse packaging and integrate old materials into our operation.
This allows us to pay fair prices to the producers, buy in reasonable volume, maintain product variety and remove the various middlemen. Core to our business success is maintaining a good relationship with our suppliers, paying them a good, fair rate and providing advice on changing trends in Canada. Many of our suppliers have been selling to the Third World Bazaar for over 20 years. This form of commerce is often called “Fair Trade”.
Over the past five years the Bakker family has traveled to, and purchased directly from producers, in Vietnam, Bangladesh, Namibia, South Africa, Kenya, Guatemala, Indonesia, Cuba and Thailand. We also supplement our inventory with purchases from wholesalers who travel to other countries. Where possible we attempt to buy from importers with similar business practices. We also source certain craft items from Canadian producers directly.
During our travels we attempt to source products that reflect our interest in culture, craftsmanship and history. The world is a varied and interesting place with many different things to offer; we hope you can find something that reflects your interests as well, at the Third World Bazaar.
Shipping product around the world involves a lot of packing materials. This year we have made an extra effort to reuse as much of the original packing material as possible. This does involve a little extra work and organization on our part, but it also reduces costs, lowers waste and enables us to keep our prices low. We hope you will understand and appreciate why your art work is wrapped in reused paper or plastic.