Does Fair Trade change society?

Study on Fair Trade 2

In order to find out what impact Fair Trade had in Germany between 2000-2015 Fairtrade Germany, the Service Agency Communities in One World/Engagement Global, Brot für die Welt, MISEREOR, and Forum Fairer Handel, with financial support from the Friedrich Ebert-Stiftung, commissioned the research institute CEval between September 2015 and September 2016 to write the report Does Fair Trade change Society?. Additionally, to the very detailed original German version, Fairtrade Germany has been published now a much shorter English version.
This may be the first study on Fair Trade societal impact in a country of the global North. It documents and analyses the strong growth of Fair Trade focusing not only on sales, but also on changes in perception, on impact on behaviour, on education for sustainable development, and Fair public procurement. Although it is a case study particular to Germany, it can serve as a role model for similar studies in other countries.
The short English version of the study can be downloaded here.
The full version (in German) can be downloaded here.

SDGs letter to Vice-President Timmermans

SDGs 2

The European Commission published a Communication on November 2016 about its intention to establish a Multi-Stakeholder Platform as part of its overall implementation of the SDGs.
SDG Watch Europe, as a broad cross-sectoral civil society alliance including the Fair Trade Advocacy Office (FTAO), welcomed this announcement and proposed a forum. It would amount to the operationalisation of the Agenda 2030's commitment to a multi-stakeholder approach as a key means of implementation. The forum should involve key stakeholders including civil society, the private sector, academia, and others. For this reason, SDG Watch Europe consulted with its members and subsequently sent a letter to the First Vice President of the Commission, Frans Timmermans. The letter sets out the priorities of the alliance in relation to any multi-stakeholder platform that is to be established as part of the overall implementation of the SDGs by the EU.

An annual appointment: Fair Trade Breakfast with the EU ambassadors

EU breakfast

The Chair of the European Parliament Committee on International Trade, MEP Bernd Lange (S&D, Germany) hosted the second Fair Trade breakfast with the EU Ambassadors on 6 September 2016 at the European Parliament in Brussels. Guests were the European Union Ambassadors to 15 countries in the Global South. The event took place in the context of the annual meeting of the EU Ambassadors with the European Parliament in Brussels. The main objective was to “promote through the EU delegations and in cooperation with the High Representative, fair and ethical trade schemes to small producers in third countries, building on existing best practice initiatives”.
This meeting also served as an occasion to discuss future opportunities and concrete actions for EU Delegations to partner up with Fair Trade producer platforms in Asia, Africa, Caribbean, Latin America and the Pacific. Other than EU Ambassadors, the event also included interventions by the Chair of the European Parliament Development Committee and of the Fair Trade Working Group (MEP Linda McAvan) as well as from the European Commission, and the Fair Trade Advocacy Office (FTAO).
As a follow-up to this event, the FTAO will follow-up individually with each participating EU Ambassador to create the opportunities for them to meet up with Fair Trade producer platforms and discuss possible ways to cooperate in support of Fair Trade in their respective countries.

EU City for Fair and Ethical Award announced by Trade Commissioner Malmström


On 18 November Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmström was in Milan to stress the key role local authorities play in the promotion of the fair and ethical trade schemes. Such programs will implement the European - Trade for All - strategy which aims to boost Fair Trade not only in third countries but also on the local dimension.
She explained: “The award will recognise positive work done by a city across the European Union. And in doing so it will encourage others to follow their lead. It can also be a means to raise awareness of the kinds of policies that have the most impact”.
The first winner is supposed to be announced for the first half of 2018 following a period of consultations during 2017, in which European Commission will collect the views of the stakeholders. They will be mainly on the criteria to applying and winning the award and on the composition of the jury.


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      The first EU Cities for Fair and Ethical Trade Award is officially launched!


      08 December 2017 (Brussels)Yesterday, the European Commission officially launched the first EU Cities for Fair and Ethical Trade Award. The Fair Trade movement warmly encourage local authorities to give the necessary visibility to their key contributors to make trade Fair by joining the competition.

      The long-awaited EU Cities for Fair and Ethical Trade Award has been officially launched yesterday. This was a commitment that the Commission took in October 2014, when the current EU Trade strategy was launched.

      The purpose of the award is to:

      • Recognize and celebrate cities’ achievements and positive impact in the areas of social, economic and environmental sustainability in international trade. 
      • Emphasize Fair and ethical trade schemes, as well as other non-governmental sustainability schemes, which may bring more sustainable opportunities to small producers in third countries and thus support sustainable and inclusive development.

      The call for applications is now open and EU local authorities can apply until April 2018. The winner is expected to be announced in Brussels in June 2018.

      “The launch of this award has been strongly requested by the Fair Trade movement and the more than 2000 Fair Trade Towns. Therefore, we welcome this initiative which gives the necessary visibility to the contribution of local authorities in promoting sustainable consumption and production models.”

      Sergi Corbalán, FTAO Executive Director

      The Fair Trade movement looks forward to supporting the European Commission and the International Trade Centre, appointed to set-up the award, to make this initiative a real success! The Fair Trade movement will mobilise its network to ensure a high participation of EU local authorities in the award. It will also seize the opportunity to raise awareness on the role of local policy makers in promoting sustainable development through trade.

      You can learn more about the award and how to apply here

      You can read FTAO’s toolkit on localising the SDGs through Fair Trade here

      A pdf version of this press release can be found here.


      The Fair Trade Advocacy Office (FTAO) speaks out for Fair Trade and Trade Justice with the aim to improve the livelihoods of marginalised producers and workers in the South. The FTAO is a joint initiative of Fairtrade International, the World Fair Trade Organization-Global and the World Fair Trade Organization-Europe.


      Peter Möhringer | | Tel: +32 (0)2 54 31 92 3

      Fair Trade Advocacy Office

      Village Partenaire - bureau 1 | 15 rue Fernand Bernierstraat | 1060 Brussels – Belgium


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