Fair trade is an organized social movement and market-based approach to empowering developing country producers and promoting sustainability.
The movement advocates the payment of a fair price as well as social and
environmental standards in areas related to the production of a wide variety of goods. It focuses in particular on exports from developing countries to developed countries, most notably handicrafts, coffee, cocoa, sugar, tea,
bananas, honey, cotton, wine, fresh fruit and flowers.
Fair Trade involves the following principles:
* Producers receive a fair price - a living wage. For commodities
* Forced labor and exploitative child labor are not allowed
* Buyers and producers trade under direct long-term relationships
* Producers have access to financial and technical assistance
* Sustainable production techniques are encouraged
* Working conditions are healthy and safe
* Equal employment opportunities are provided for all
* All aspects of trade and production are open to public accountability
In today's world economy, where profits rule and small-scale producers are left out of the bargaining process, farmers, craft producers, and other workers are often left without resources or hope for their future. Fair Trade helps exploited producers escape from this cycle and gives them a way to maintain their traditional lifestyles with dignity.