WHAT IS FAIRTRADE?
Fairtrade is an alternative approach to conventional trade and is based on a partnership between producers and consumers. When farmers can sell on Fairtrade terms, it provides them with a better deal and improved terms of trade. This allows them the opportunity to improve their lives and plan for their future. Fairtrade offers consumers a powerful way to reduce poverty through their everyday shopping.
The Fairtrade Standards are designed to address the imbalance of power in trading relationships, unstable markets and the injustices of conventional trade. Fairtrade’s approach enables farmers and workers to have more control over their lives and decide how to invest in their future. As a leader in the global movement to make trade fair, Fairtrade supports and challenges businesses and governments and connects farmers and workers with the people who buy their products.
By choosing Fairtrade, people can create change through their everyday actions. A product with the FAIRTRADE Mark means producers and businesses have met internationally agreed standards which have been independently certified.
Farmers and workers have a strong voice at every level of Fairtrade, from how they invest in and run their local organizations to having an equal say in Fairtrade’s global decision-making.
HOW FAIRTRADE WORKS
FAIR FOR PRODUCERS
Small-scale farmers and workers are among the most marginalized by the global trade system. At Fairtrade, they are at the heart of everything we do. Unique among certification schemes, producers have an equal say in how Fairtrade is run and are included in all our decision-making.
For farmers and workers, Fairtrade means:
- Prices that aim to cover the average costs of producing their crop sustainably – a vital safety net when market prices drop
- The Fairtrade Premium – an extra sum of money paid on top of the selling price to invest in business or community projects of their choice
- Decent working conditions and a ban on discrimination, forced labour and child labour
- Access to advance credit ahead of harvest time
- Being able to plan more for the future with more security and stronger relationships with buyers
Read more about Fairtrade’s impact for farmers and workers.
PRODUCERS HAVE A STRONG SAY IN FAIRTRADE
Fairtrade producers have 50 percent of the vote at our General Assembly, and farmers and workers are also consulted during the process for establishing new standards and policies for Fairtrade. The three regional Fairtrade producer networks play a prominent role on the Board of Directors at Fairtrade International, ensuring even greater producer representation.
FAIR FOR CONSUMERS
Consumers are a vital part of Fairtrade. Every Fairtrade product you choose or campaign you support enables farmers and workers to invest in their lives and take more control of their future.
- A product with the FAIRTRADE Mark means the producers and businesses have met the stringent Fairtrade social, economic and environmental standards.
- According to a 2015 GlobeScan study of consumers in 15 countries, more than 50 percent of consumers are familiar with the FAIRTRADE Mark and of those, 80 percent say they have a more positive perception of brands that carry it.