The FAIRTRADE Mark is an independent consumer label appearing on products to guarantee that disadvantaged producers in the developing world are getting a better and fair deal.
The FAIRTRADE Mark ensures that the products meet Fairtrade standards. The Fairtrade Labelling Organisations (FLO) sets the international standards which each producer in any country has to be annually accredited for.
Fairtrade guarantees that a premium from the sale of products in First World countries with the Fairtrade logo will go back to the producer. The premium is used to uplift small developing producers and their employees.
Frequently asked Fairtrade questions
What is Fairtrade?
Fairtrade is synonymous with sustainable social and economic development and ethical business practices, especially in previously disadvantaged communities or developing countries.
The following is the most widely accepted definition of Fairtrade:
“ Fair Trade is a trading partnership, based on dialogue, transparency and respect, that seeks greater equity in international trade. It contributes to sustainable development by offering better trading conditions to, and securing the rights of, marginalized producers and workers - especially in the South. Fair Trade organizations (backed by consumers) are engaged actively in supporting producers, awareness raising and in campaigning for changes in the rules and practice of conventional international trade. Fair Trade's strategic intent is:
- Deliberately to work with marginalized producers and workers in order to help them move from a position of vulnerability to security and economic self-sufficiency
- To empower producers and workers as stakeholders in their own organisations
- To actively to play a wider role in the global arena to achieve greater equity in international trade.”
Who benefits from Fairtrade?
Everyone benefits. Fairtrade is a win-win situation for the producer, consumer and the environment.
Workers or farmers benefit from training and skills transfer projects, and Fairtrade empowers them to alleviate poverty by becoming economically self-sufficient. These farmers and workers also become stakeholders in their business. The Fairtrade premiums are often plough back into projects such as improved education.
Consumers benefit in terms of getting superb quality products and a sound conscience, knowing they’re doing their bit to address global trade inequities.
The environment also benefit because Fairtrade encourages environmentally sustainable production methods.
How are products Fairtrade certified?
Click on this link for a detailed explanation of the Fairtrade certification process: http://www.fairtrade.net/certifying_fairtrade.html. Fairtrade certification is achieved by meeting specific international criteria, which are which are independently assessed and monitored, and the whole system is open and transparent. The FAIRTRADE Mark is the only independent consumer guarantee of fair trade.
For more information, visit these websites:
Fairtrade Label South Africa : http://www.fairtradesa.org.za/
Fairtrade Labelling Organisations International (FLO) http://www.fairtrade.net/home.html