Fair Trade


The history of Fairtrade is not definitely clear but, reportedly, it started by the purchasing of needlework from Puerto Rico in 1946 by American craft groups. The first shop which opened selling this, and other products, dates back to 1958. In the USA and Europe, Oxfam started selling Chinese refugee’s craft items in its shops in the late 1950s.

The movement grew, and in the Netherlands in 1967, the Fairtrade organisation was formed.

However, it wasn’t until 1980s that the concept of a Fairtrade label was developed, and in 1988 a Dutch development agency launched the “Max Havelaar” label. This meant that any company respecting the conditions of Fairtrade would qualify to use the Fairtrade label.

It was named after a fictional Dutch character who opposed the exploitation of coffee pickers in Dutch colonies.

What does Fairtrade do?


Fairtrade is about better prices, decent working conditions, local sustainability, and fair terms of trade for farmers and workers in the developing world. Companies have to pay sustainable prices to ensure producers receive a price which exceeds the minimum of sustainable production of their product.

Fairtrade assists producers to control and improve their lives by assisting them in overcoming the conventional problems associated with normal trading where the producers can be discriminated against.

How Fair Trade Work?


Fairtrade provides farmers and workers in developing countries with a fair price (the Fairtrade price) for their produce, helping protect them from damaging fluctuations in world market prices. They also receive an additional sum of money (the Fairtrade Premium) for investment in social, economic and environmental development in their community, such as educational and medical facilities.

Fairtrade Certification Standards prohibits the use of forced or abusive child labour.

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