WASHINGTON – Dec. 20, 2021 – Fairtrade America – an independent, third-party certification that partners with farmers and workers to negotiate better prices, decent working conditions, and a fairer deal overall – today released five key consumer trends that will impact how brands source ingredients and work to have a larger impact on people and the planet in 2022. Shoppers are increasingly looking for ethically-sourced products. More than half of respondents to Fairtrade’s biennial Fairtrade Consumer Insights report, conducted by GlobeScan, confirmed they have changed their purchasing choices within the past year to make a difference on economic, social, environmental or Read More
The Fair Trade Towns movement started in April 2000 in Garstang (pop. 5,000) in north-west England. By 2011 it had grown rapidly to feature 1,000 Fair Trade Towns in 21 other countries. Only six years later, in October 2017, the global list of Fair Trade Towns had reached 2,000! The number of countries where campaigning around the Fair Trade Town idea was taking place had, by then, reached 33 (Belgium/Flanders and Belgium/Wallonia being counted separately). The current list, in March, 2019 is here.
Consumers have access to more information about products of small farmers and artisans in the Global South than ever before. Fair Trade certification has evolved significantly over the last 25 years and helped to increase incomes in poor communities in many countries. Fair Trade has been a leading force in the global sustainable development movement, notably in the formation of the ISEAL Alliance. Fair Trade certification is not, however, the only expression of 'Fair Trade'. Dedicated business associations play their part, as do companies that, for differing reasons, eschew third-party certification and rely on their own commitment to Fair Trade Read More
Monday, October 24, 2016 was the 5th Anniversary of the unanimous passing by the Mankato City Council of a Resolution that enabled ‘Fair Trade Town’ status to be claimed according to the criteria of the national Fair Trade Campaigns, coordinating body for Fair Trade Towns, Colleges, Schools and Congregations. Thursday, October 27, saw the holding of two Anniversary events, both addressed by Mark Ritchie, former Minnesota Secretary of State - a Conference (9:30am-2:30pm) at Minnesota State University-Mankato on the theme “Fair Trade for a Sustainable Future”, and a Celebration, 7:00-9:00pm at Christ the King Lutheran Church, Mankato. This Article focuses only on Read More
October is Fair Trade Month. In 2016 it has the added significance of featuring the 5th Anniversary of‘ “Mankato-Fair Trade Town". At this moment MAFTTI wants to bring supporters’ attention to a few issues that bear upon the future of Fair Trade education and advocacy in the area. A printed version of MAFTTI Messages, with additional graphics, was presented to those who attended the Celebration of the 5th Anniversary of the Mankato City Council’s Resolution held at Christ the King Lutheran Church, Mankato, on October 27, 2016. The intention of the Messages is two-fold: (a) To point up some of the emphases Read More
Mankato City Council passed a unanimous Resolution on October 24, 2011 declaring Mankato a ‘Fair Trade Town” acceding to the criteria of the national Fair Trade Towns campaign. On the 5th Anniversary, MAFTTI presented a report to the City Council which can be read here.
Paul Renshaw, MAFTTI Chair, has compiled some “ruminations” seven years after the founding of MAFTTI and in advance of the 5th Anniversary celebration of Mankato’s status as a ‘Fair Trade Town’ in October, 2016. Paul's reflections are here. Picture: Paul & Arlene Renshaw at the first Sustainability Expo, MSU, April 2014
MAFTTI Chair Paul Renshaw attended the 9th International Fair Trade Towns Conference in Bristol, England, July 4-5, 2015. One workshop was devoted to "Resilience, Convergence and Fair Trade". This is a complex trio of concepts, one that needed much more time than the hour allotted. However, here are some notes of a preliminary nature. They contain some material shared by the speakers but also the result of some foraging on the internet in search of greater understanding, even of how a cashew nut grows.
Famed Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling’s Harvard commencement speech in 2008 has just been published. Some of her thoughts are apt as World Fair Trade Day (May 9) approaches. “We do not need magic to change the world, we carry all the power we need inside ourselves already: we have the power to imagine better.” This speaks to the heart of Fair Trade, a global movement of millions of people – farmers, artisans, consumers – who dream that a world of greater equity, justice and compassion is possible. J.K. Rowling challenged her Harvard audience to cultivate empathy alongside the power of Read More
On March 17, 2015 a presentation on Fair Trade was made in the MSU Social Justice Lecture series. The speakers were Mark Hudson and Mara Fridell, sociologists from the University of Manitoba. Their speaking at MSU was proposed by MAFTTI and facilitated by the Sociology Department and other interested on-campus entitities, both faculty and student-led. The stimulus for the lecture was the publication in 2013 of "Fair Trade, Sustainability and Social Change" (Palgrave Macmillan). Mark Hudson and Mara Fridell shared in co-authoring this book. Notes on the presentation were drafted by Sally Coomes (First Presbyterian Church, Mankato),augmented by Paul Renshaw Read More