Fair Trade is based on a partnership between farmers and consumers. Farmers receive a fair dollar for their produce while customers support economic growth and development of rural, economically challenged areas by purchasing products with the Fair Trade mark. It is a growing alternative approach to traditional trade practices.
Farmers who produce and sell goods under Fair Trade terms are provided the opportunity to improve their lives and plan for their future with fair compensation for their products. This in turn builds sustainable communities, as monies received are reinvested to positively influence their community.
Fair Trade provides four unique benefits to farmers:
1 – Stable prices – minimum prices set to cover the costs of production
2 – Social premium – paid on top of the minimum price, the premium is typically reinvested in education, health care, or community improvements
3 – Partnership – farmers are involved in the decisions impacting their future through joint efforts with the international board to impact prices, premiums, standards, and strategies
4 – Local empowerment – farmers and workers are involved in the partnership to improve the lives of the local community
Fair Trade also benefits consumers. Shoppers can spend their monies on items that align with their values and principles. Consumers can have a powerful role in reducing poverty around the world through their everyday shopping. Their purchases support farmers and communities striving to improve their lives.
Importers/exporters are able to confidently ensure their purchases have a positive impact on the people who produced the goods.
Fair Trade practices reward and encourage farming and production practices which are environmentally friendly and sustainable. This includes integrated crop management practices, protecting water and natural vegetation resources, and avoiding the use of toxic chemicals for pest management. While products are not required to be organic, many are. Most products also meet non-GMO (genetically modified organism) standards.
These practices support small community farmers, not conglomerates. The cooperative system is core to the success of fair trade practices.
Fair Trade products do not necessarily cost more than comparable products. Coffees and chocolates are generally priced to be competitive with other gourmet coffees and chocolates on the market. Fresh fruits, on the other hand, can cost much more because cooperatives lack the logistical capabilities of large national companies to transport their product to market.
Today, Fair Trade benefits more than 1.2 million farming families in 70 developing countries across Africa, Asia, and Latin America.
Globally, the Fair Trade network certifies coffee, tea, herbs, cocoa, fresh fruit and vegetables, sugar, legumes, grains, flowers, nuts, oils, honey, spices, and wine.
Most of our coffees are Fair Trade certified. Contact us for more information or to try our delicious coffees.