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Fair Trade

  • Date Submitted: 12/13/2012 03:35 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 43.6 
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Are consumers getting a fair deal from Fairtrade products?
British shoppers have taken Fairtrade to heart and are spending more than ever on products like coffee, tea, bananas, and chocolate that are certified by the FAIRTRADE Mark to “guarantee Third World producers a better deal”. Retail sales of products carrying the Mark are estimated at over £140 million for 2004 – an increase of 51% on the previous year, and more than double the level in 2002. Consumers are buying Fairtrade products because they care about people in the world’s poorest countries who work hard to produce the goods that we enjoy, and also because they trust the FAIRTRADE
Mark to ensure that producers genuinely benefit from the sale of Fairtrade products. The Fairtrade Foundation acknowledges that the integrity of the Mark, and the trust that consumers place in it, is a precious asset that must be
protected at all times.
The five guarantees behind the FAIRTRADE Mark are:
a) A fair and stable price to farmers for their products
b) The opportunity for farmers and plantation workers to improve their lives
c) Greater respect for the environment
d) A closer link between shoppers and producers
e) A stronger position for small farmers in world markets
Although a fair price is just one of these guarantees, it is often the most important one for consumers and they obviously
want to see a connection between the additional income received by producers and the extra price they pay at the checkout. In particular, they are understandably concerned that other actors in the supply chain such as importers, manufacturers and retailers do not make excessive profits from consumers’ ethical concerns. We work with dozens of product categories that are all traded, transported and processed in different ways, which makes it impossible to generalize about how the Fairtrade price guarantee to producers affects the retail price that consumers pay in their local shop. This paper briefly explains some of the many...

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