Fair Trade can be defined as 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. 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.
In the UK a well known Fair Trade organisation is the Fairtrade Foundation. They licence the use of the FAIRTRADE mark on products when certain standards have been met. An independent organisation, checks that the Fairtrade Standards have been met by everyone in the supply chain. Fairtrade sets social, economic and environmental standards for the companies and farmers involved. https://www.fairtrade.org.uk/what-is-fairtrade/
Fairtrade rallies a global community of millions – farmers and workers, supply chain partners, brands, retailers, shoppers, schools, government – to pay fair prices and uphold fair production standards and practices. There are over 1.66 million farmers and workers in 1,411 producer organisations across the Fairtrade system.
For farmers and workers the standards include protection of workers’ rights and the environment, for companies they include the payment of the Fairtrade Minimum Price safety net and an additional Fairtrade Premium. Read more about the Fairtrade Premium.
There are other Fair Trade organisations as well: the World Fair Trade Organisation is the global community and verifier of social enterprises that fully practice Fair Trade. Spread across 76 countries, WFTO members all exist to serve marginalised communities. To be a WFTO member, an enterprise or organisation must demonstrate they put people and planet first in everything they do. The organisation is democratically run by members, who are part of a broader community of over 1,000 social enterprises and 1,500 shops.
The WFTO focuses on both social enterprise and Fair Trade. WFTO verifies members are mission-led enterprises fully practicing the 10 Principles of Fair Trade across their business and supply chains. Once verified, all members have free use of the WFTO Guaranteed Fair Trade product label. https://wfto.com/who-we-are