Principles of Fair Trade
The fundamental idea of Fair Trade is to pay a fair price for the products of disadvantaged producers, which normally is above the respective world market price. This way, producers are enabled to earn a higher income, which guarantees them to cover production costs, to secure their livelihood and to ensure a socially fair, healthy and environmentally friendly production.
With long-term contracts, the producers gain a certain guarantee and security for long-term investments and the creation of new jobs. Hence, Fair Trade creates opportunities for economically disadvantaged producers, helps them become more independent and encourages them to maintain and improve their position in the market.
In addition, Fair Trade is committed to ensuring that international environmental and social standards are being maintained, woman are treated equally and receive an appropriate pay for their work and child labor is excluded. In general, the activities of fair trade can be summarized as follows:
• To create opportunities for economically disadvantaged producers
• To pay a fair price, which is above the world market price, independent from its fluctuations, and paid in advance when necessary
• To create socially acceptable working conditions (working conditions should comply with relevant healthy and safety regulations, prohibition of child labor and slavery, equal opportunities for women)
• To establish capacity and know-how
• Transparency and responsibility (transparent management, respectful contact with producers and continuous dialogue)
• To protect the environment (to promote ecological agriculture and exclude pesticides that are harmful to the environment)
In general, Fair Trade is based on dialogue, transparence and respect. The criteria, on which the activities of Fair Trade are based on, are being defined by the “convention of the world shops”, in which these three principles are also included. In doing so, producer-organizations, importers and worldshop all work together.