Our story

FLYING THE COOP

When I emigrated to Canada in 2016 with my husband, I picked up my career where I had left off in Europe: Working in a marketing department for a company whose products I liked but ultimately had no real attachment to. Products that were mass-produced in China and then put in a pretty packaging to sell to European or North American customers. I was putting lipstick on a pig, and to be honest, I wasn’t very comfortable doing it anymore.

While I was grateful to have found an engaging and challenging job immediately, I was starting to see the way our ‘global economy’ runs more and more critically. At the same time, an idea was brewing in my mind that would see me building my own business. A business that sold products I believe in. Products that were made without exploiting humans, our planet or animals.

I finally wanted to feel good about the way I earned a living. It was time for me to fly the coop.

GETTING MY DUCKS IN A ROW

I started researching products I would want to sell and something dawned on me. If I truly wanted to sell products that don’t harm people, the environment, or animals, all of the products would ultimately have to be a) vegan & cruelty-free, b) made somewhat locally and c) made fair.

From this point forward, I decided to really get my ducks in a row and get FAIR/SQUARE moving. I quit my corporate job, contacted local makers and small businesses in Canada, and began building the website and online store you see today. With no external investors and just our small savings, I have stocked it with products that I wholeheartedly believe in and love to use myself.

Today, I’m proud to have not only survived my first year in business but managed to continuously grow it bit by bit. My husband has been incredibly supportive and comes with me to every single vegan event I sign us up for.

BETTING ON THE RIGHT HORSE

Being self-employed gives me the freedom to do what I believe in on my own time. It allows me to be at home to raise our newborn daughter and it allows me to support local farm animal sanctuaries with our profits – two things that are incredibly important to me.

Looking ahead, we’re hoping to grow further and offer you, our customers, even more awesome vegan products made in Canada. We’re full of ideas and can’t wait to bring some of them to life in the near future.

When you support FAIR/SQUARE, you’re supporting not just our little family but numerous other small businesses. Plus, you’re sticking it to the meat-based pecking order that we all know is in decline.

Our values

fair

At FAIR/SQUARE, we believe that business is about more than just making money. Our mission is to run a business that sells responsibly made products and to show that our choices matter and can make a difference.

For some, the term “fair” might seem vague. For us, it encompasses everything that we believe in. A product can only be truly “fair” if it doesn’t exploit anyone or anything. This includes not only farmers and workers (as in fairtrade) but also our animal friends and the planet. No one should have to suffer for humans to create a good product. Nature and modern technology provide everything we need.

We also believe in leading by example. That’s why we bank with a credit union, run our webshop with a green hosting company, use only recycled shipping materials and offset our carbon emissions. We also donate 1% of our annual revenues to Canadian animal sanctuaries and animal rights organizations.

vegan

Veganism isn’t just a trend or marketing gimmick – it reflects our ethics and desire for a society without cruelty.

The use of animal-based ingredients is pervasive in today’s consumer market. It is not just the obvious steak, milk and cheese on restaurant’s menus but the many many components derived from what once was a living sentient being. We believe, that if people learned about these additives and how they came to be, a lot more people would opt for plant-based and vegan products.

We also see veganism as an important contributor to a greener and more sustainable future. 

By making vegan and cruelty-free products more accessible, we can help people to transition to a more responsible and sustainable lifestyle. Our goal is to make vegan shopping as easy as possible. That’s why take great care when sourcing our products to make sure that they 100% vegan. We read the labels, so you don’t have to and can just choose from all the amazing products on our site.

canadian

There’s no doubt about it, Canada sure is a great country. But that’s not actually the reason why we focus on products made in Canada.

As great as it is that our world is so connected these days and that we can get products from all over the world, it also creates a lot of problems. 

Production standards in other countries are not always what we would call ethical or sustainable. Neither is the amount of carbon emissions created to ship or fly all these products to Canada.

On top of that, there are a ton of great Canadian businesses with fair and ethical business practices that make awesome products. A lot of them also give back to local communities, the environment or whatever other things they care about. We love that and that’s why we want to support them and work with them.

What do we do?

Handmade

We give back

At FAIR/SQUARE, we have given back 1% of our revenues from day one. First as a member of 1% For The Planet, and now on our own.

While we loved being a member of the powerful 1% For The Planet network, it limited our support to their network of registered organizations. And all the small local animal sanctuaries and animal rights organizations that we love to support are not (yet) a part of their network.

We now donate 1% of our annual revenues directly to the organizations we care about. These include local sanctuaries such as Cedar Row, Karuna Lane and Frog Hollow and animal rights organizations such as Animal Justice.

We ship responsibly

We work exclusively with Canadian companies, only sell in Canada and only use recycled shipping materials, so overall our CO2 emissions are pretty low. But we want to do more!

That’s why we joined Carbonfund.org to offset our shipping-based CO2 emissions. Carbonfund.org supports third-party validated renewable energy, energy efficiency and reforestation projects that reduce carbon dioxide emissions and the threat of climate change.

Carbonfund.org partner | carbon neutral shipping with FAIR/SQUARE
Green website hosting with GreenGeeks

WE RUN A GREEN WEBSITE

We host FAIR/SQUARE with GreenGeeks, the world’s #1 green energy web hosting provider. Many of us are not aware of it, but by 2020, the web hosting industry is set to surpass the airline industry in environmental pollution!

That’s why we decided to go with GreenGeeks. They work with environmental foundations to purchase wind energy credits to put back into the grid three times (3X) the amount of energy they consume.

GET IN TOUCH

We’re always excited to hear from our customers or like-minded organizations. Please send us a message and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.