Fairtrade’s Strategy Making a Difference
Fairtrade strives for a world in which all producers can enjoy secure and sustainable livelihoods, fulfil their potential and decide on their future. Two years ago, Fairtrade International (FLO) embarked on a plan to strengthen Fairtrade, broaden its reach and deepen its impact. What emerged was a Global Strategy called “Making the Difference.”
Two years on, this is how our strategy is making a difference…
A Stronger Fairtrade
We saw that we needed to improve how we connect producers and business. We needed to be easier to work across borders and we needed better strategic thinking and ways of working. Three newly created units are meeting these needs.
For example, thanks to this new talent, we responded quickly and thoroughly to coffee market challenges through our coffee action plan; participated in the international climate change talks in Cancun; and secured commitments from global business partners such as Starbucks.
Fairtrade is expanding to reach more people in more countries. We have welcomed new organizations in the Czech Republic, South Africa and Korea that are bringing Fairtrade products to market.
We cannot achieve our goals alone. Partnerships are essential. For example, together with the Forest Stewardship Council and the Alliance for Responsible Mining we are bringing Fairtrade to timber producers and gold miners in Latin America.
We are exploring how to bring opportunity to more farmers and workers. Democratically run cooperatives give producers a strong voice and help make trade fairer. But we also need to broaden Fairtrade to other communities – such as fruit gatherers in the Amazon or cotton pickers in Malawi, who cannot organize in a conventional way.
We recognize that the needs of a vegetable grower in Kenya differ from a coffee farmer in Indonesia. So we redeveloped our Standards for small producers, to create greater flexibility for farmers and enable them to follow their own development path.
Producers will be able to create customized business and development plans as part of their Fairtrade certification. Our Producer Services and Relations Unit with currently 43 Liaison Officers in the field, will train producers in the new standards and help them secure greater benefits from Fairtrade.
And we are working closely with the Producer Networks. The influence and capacity of the Networks has grown considerably and will continue to do so.
We have made tremendous progress toward achieving our vision. But, we are still on the journey. In the year to come, we will continue to reach out to as many people as possible in growing Fairtrade. Throughout the coming months we will be sharing news on new efforts that will continue to strengthen Fairtrade, broaden its reach, and deepen its impact.