Fairtrade at 20

Fairtrade at 20

Fact of the Week: 125 different countries sell Fairtrade products


Fairtrade certified products are sold in businesses all over the UK, from supermarkets and independent shops to cafés and restaurants; you’ll also find a massive range of Fairtrade labelled products here at ethicalsuperstore.com. This year we are celebrating 20 years of Fairtrade in the UK. While the first Fairtrade labelled product was coffee produced in the Netherlands in 1988, the UK has been selling Fairtrade Labelled products since 1994 to become one of the world’s leading Fairtrade markets with sales in 2012 reaching £1.57bn.

But what does the Fairtrade label really mean? You know it can help farmers in developing countries but the question is how does buying one product help someone thousands of miles away? It’s simple really, if you spend your money on certified products, you are giving money to a supplier that meets certain standards put in place by the Fairtrade foundation, including protection of worker’s rights and the environment, payment of the Fairtrade Minimum Price and an additional Fairtrade Premium to invest in business or community projects.

Tea picker - ©Anette Kay

Fairtrade tea picker

These standards ensure that workers are paid a living wage which serves to better their economic situation and living standards, without simply sending aid to the 1.4 million farmers and workers in 70 countries around the world who participate in Fairtrade. The organisation really stands out because it is 50% owned by producers, so they have an equal voice in decision making and ultimately can create their own working standards.
Fairtrade products are now sold in over 125 countries worldwide and include bananas, tea, coffee, chocolate, fashion, flowers, gold and sugar among many others.

If simply buying Fairtrade is not enough for you, visit their website and find out what else you can do!

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  • Leanne J

    I think the first Fairtrade product I bought would have been either bananas or coffee about 15 years ago! Showing my age there 😉 Since then I’ve tried to find Fairtrade alternatives where possible – I’ve been pleased to get Fairtrade roses on Valentine’s Day and even Fairtrade gold jewellery at Christmas! There are lots of things we can do to be conscious about where our products come from and how the original workers are rewarded, it’s good to see awareness of it.