With the help of Glenn Chun, S.J., a former instructor in the University’s department of accountancy, Hammett hooked up with Equal Exchange, a Massachusetts-based fair-trade co-op that offers special pricing for non-profit or religious organizations. Soon the switch was complete. “It just seemed very appropriate as a Jesuit institution, with our focus on service and justice,” Hammett says.
The fair-trade movement has grown in recent years as independent companies and trade organizations have sprung up to help farmers and artisans in developing countries get a fair price for their goods and earn a decent living wage. Most of the coffee served at the weekly events at Xavier comes from El Salvador and Nicaragua. “It is good coffee,” Hammett says. “We drink a lot of coffee over here. We probably average around 70 people every week, and we have a coffee hour almost every week of the school year.”