from Equal Exchange: http://shop.equalexchange.coop/mission-trade
“Fair Trade goods are just that. Fair. From far-away farms to your shopping cart, products that bear our logo come from farmers and workers who are justly compensated. We help farmers in developing countries build sustainable businesses that positively influence their communities.” (Fair Trade USA) http://fairtradeusa.org/what-is-fair-trade
What is Fair Trade?
What is Fair Trade?
Fair Trade Principles and Overview from Equal Exchange
Equal Exchange Videos: http://equalexchange.coop/programs/education/video-powerpoint
Ethical Trading Initiative:
World Fair Trade Organization:
American Apparel Clothing: http://www.americanapparel.net/aboutus/
The Green Pages: Green America Certified Companies: http://www.greenpages.org/
Fair Trade International
From Fair Trade USA:
What is the difference between free trade and fair trade?
“According to Fair Trade USA’s founder, President and CEO Paul Rice, ‘Fair Trade makes free trade work for the world’s poor.’
Free trade is the economic theory that the market should be allowed to flow without government intervention. Purists want to get rid of all trade tariffs, subsidies, and protectionist economic policies. However, it is these very regulations which stop commodity prices from fluctuating uncontrollably. This laissez-faire theory aims to reach market equilibrium – where supply meets each demand. What free trade supporters fail to consider is the fact that, sometimes, the means to get that supply is not all that fair.
Historically, free trade has left small-scale producers behind as large subsidized companies start to take over their industries. While large contracted farms can afford to sell commodities at lower prices, local farmers, who have traditionally supplied these products, are driven into debt. The only way these farmers can compete with subsidized farms is to lower their product prices to the point where labor is free and quality of life is unsustainable.
In the case of coffee growers, these producers lack information on the real market value of their commodity, which easily makes them victims to unfair market deals that take advantage of their inexperience. Additionally, these farmers often lack access to credit and are forced to take quick cash from buyers who offer to pay a fraction of what their crop is worth.
Fair Trade helps level the playing field by equipping the farmers with tools—information and training—they need to receive fair prices for their products. The Fair Trade system aims to provide greater market access to farmers, which gives them a larger say in how much their product is worth.We say that Fair Trade is “market-based” because it relies on socially-conscious consumers support the movement by purchasing Fair Trade products. Through their conscious purchases, consumers tell companies that they care about the farmers and workers who produce their products. Fair Trade aims to address the underlying inequities caused by poverty and lack of access to market information that free trade ignores.”
From FairTrade International.
From Equal Exchange:
From FairTrade of Australia and New Zealand:
What Fair Trade Means from Lake Champlaigne Chocolates
The Small Producers’ Symbol is an initiative launched in 2006 by the Latin American and Caribbean Network of Small Fair Trade Producers (Coordinadora Latinoamericana y del Caribe de Pequeños Productores de Comercio Justo—CLAC), with support from the Fair Trade and Solidarity Economy movements in a number of continents. To guarantee the appropriate use of the Symbol, small producers’ organizations created FUNDEPPO (Foundation of Organized Small Producers), with the aim of ensuring that this Symbol truly benefits small producers, communities and consumers. FUNDEPPO works with skilled professionals and entities to independently and reliably certify compliance with the Symbol’s standards.
The graphic image of the Small Producers’ Symbol represents a house that has been built solidly and is open to everyone, as well as balance and unity between producers and consumers, between men and women, and between nature and dignified living. Its colors represent the vitality of the land, of crops, new life and the heart.
Fair Trade Federation Principles
The Fair Trade Federation Principles have been created using the global principles of the World Fair Trade Organization (WFTO) as their foundation. The Fair Trade Federation and the World Fair Trade Organization recognize and uphold each other’s principles, and work together as allied organizations to promote greater equity in international trade
Fair Trade Federation members fully commit to the following principles in all of their transactions.
Create Opportunities for Economically and Socially Marginalized Producers
Fair Trade is a strategy for poverty alleviation and sustainable development. Members create social and economic opportunities through trading partnerships with marginalized producers. Members place the interests of producers and their communities as the primary concern of their enterprise.
Develop Transparent and Accountable Relationships
Fair Trade involves relationships that are open, fair, consistent, and respectful. Members show consideration for both customers and producers by sharing information about the entire trading chain through honest and proactive communication. They create mechanisms to help customers and producers feel actively involved in the trading chain. If problems arise, members work cooperatively with fair trade partners and other organizations to implement solutions.
Fair Trade is a means to develop producers’ independence. Members maintain long-term relationships based on solidarity, trust, and mutual respect, so that producers can improve their skills and their access to markets. Members help producers to build capacity through proactive communication, financial and technical assistance, market information, and dialogue. They seek to share lessons learned, to spread best practices, and to strengthen the connections between communities, including among producer groups.
Promote Fair Trade
Fair Trade encourages an understanding by all participants of their role in world trade. Members actively raise awareness about Fair Trade and the possibility of greater justice in the global economic system. They encourage customers and producers to ask questions about conventional and alternative supply chains and to make informed choices. Members demonstrate that trade can be a positive force for improving living standards, health, education, the distribution of power, and the environment in the communities with which they work.
Pay Promptly and Fairly
Fair Trade empowers producers to set prices within the framework of the true costs of labor, time, materials, sustainable growth, and related factors. Members take steps to ensure that producers have the capacity to manage this process. Members comply with or exceed international, national, local, and, where applicable, Fair Trade Minimum standards for their employees and producers. Members seek to ensure that income is distributed equitably at all times, particularly equal pay for equal work by women and men. Members ensure prompt payment to all of their partners. Producers are offered access to interest-free advance payment for handmade goods, or pre-finance of agricultural harvest with favorable terms.
Support Safe and Empowering Working Conditions
Fair Trade means a safe and healthy working environment free of forced labor. Throughout the trading chain, Members cultivate workplaces that empower people to participate in the decisions that affect them. Members seek to eliminate discrimination based on race, caste, national origin, religion, disability, gender, sexual orientation, union membership, political affiliation, age, marital, or health status. Members support workplaces free from physical, sexual, psychological, or verbal harassment or abuse.
Ensure the Rights of Children
Fair Trade means that all children have the right to security, education, and play. Throughout the trading chain, Members respect and support the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, as well as local laws and social norms. Members disclose the involvement of children in production. Members do not support child trafficking and exploitative child labor.
Cultivate Environmental Stewardship
Fair Trade seeks to offer current generations the ability to meet their needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Members actively consider the implications of their decisions on the environment and promote the responsible stewardship of resources. Members reduce, reuse, reclaim, and recycle materials wherever possible. They encourage environmentally sustainable practices throughout the entire trading chain.
Respect Cultural Identity
Fair Trade celebrates the cultural diversity of communities, while seeking to create positive and equitable change. Members respect the development of products, practices, and organizational models based on indigenous traditions and techniques to sustain cultures and revitalize traditions. Members balance market needs with producers’ cultural heritage.
The History of Authentic Fair Trade from Equal Exchange
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