Not all trade is fair. Farmers and workers who produce what is marketed do not always receive an appropriate share of the benefits of trade. FAIRTRADE is an independent organisation that seeks to change that. It is an alternative to conventional trade that is based on the agreement between producers and consumers, where farmers in poor overseas countries are paid a fair price for their products.

If a product carries the FAIRTRADE seal it means that producers and traders comply with the requirements of being against inequality, unstable markets and the injustice in trade relations.


They have four main areas of activity:

–        Providing the FAIRTRADE seal, which ensure their products and breaks the chain of commerce;

–        Assisting in increasing the demand for these products;

–        Supporting producer organisations;

–        Creating public awareness.

This last point is aimed at all of us as consumers, we ourselves have the power to change the situation of the market today with small actions like buying, whenever possible, products with the Fairtrade mark. Also, with the new age of technology we can give our support through Facebook or distribute what this organization does through social networks and get ourselves creating some public awareness!

We wanted to do our bit and we attended the FAIRTRADE Fair in Richmond last Monday October 20th to show our support for this brand and its development in this borough. During the event, the Richmond network showed a video commemorating the 20th anniversary of FAIRTRADE and we can see in more detail the development of the brand since its inception to the present.

A fairtrade purchase means smallholders gain extra income, which will make them stronger against world markets, thereby helping to create a link between us and the producers and showing everybody that other markets are possible, a market that respects both people and the environment.

Finally, the Richmond volunteers’ network is looking for new members. They need people who want to be actively engaged as group members and also volunteers to help informally when they have some free time. If you’re interested you can find out about how you can help by sending an email to the following address:

By Victoria Dominguez, Biodiversity Communications Officer.