The effects of changing global weather patterns are all around us. Farmers are noticing drought conditions, floods and soil degradation, and unfortunately, small farmers are typically the most impacted from our ever changing climate. When individuals hear of fair trade they typically think it is giving fair wages and healthy work environments, but in fact, fair trade is equally invested in preserving the environment.
Fair Trade For The Planet.
When farmers are struggling to survive, then tend to take short cuts with the soil and loss prevention, spraying chemicals or utilizing GMO’s to grow crops with higher yields. When fair trade programs began, it gave farmers the opportunity to care for the land and the food being produced because they will receive fair compensation for their work. The aim of fair trade is to offer better terms of trade to local producers and workers, and thereby help to build local communities and the environment. Farmers must comply with strict requirements to be considered fair trade – some of the requirements include; soil retention, sustainably sourcing water, carbon emission regulations, non-GMO, and minimize the use of agrochemicals.
Benefits of Fair-Trade:
- Fair trade is a growing campaign movement with more than 550 Fairtrade towns, almost 900 fair trade schools and 170 Fairtrade universities, and more than 7,000 fair trade faith groups.
- Fair trade promotes training on climate change mitigation for farmers.
- 26% of all farmers and workers in fair trade organizations are women.
- There are 1,411 certified fair trade organizations.
- No child labour is used.
- The fair trade system currently works with over 1.65 million farmers and workers.
- 1.5 hectares is the average size of a fair trade farm.
- Fair trade prohibits the use of certain agrochemicals that are harmful to the environment and encourages farmers to reduce their use of pesticides.
How can I make an impact:
Tier 1: Global Goodness
- Supporting fair trade companies. Knowing which companies to support makes mindful consumption much easier. There are fair trade companies in every industry, from food , household goods and clothing.
- Get involved in your local fair trade community. There are thousands of fair trade organizations over the world – being involved to keeps you up to date on the latest fair trade companies and initiatives.
Tier 3: Earth Angel
- All of Action 1 & 2
- Volunteer in your local community for fair trade organizations. Helping hands and community involvement will always help progress the fair trade movement.
- Let’s make fair trade standards actual laws. By lobbying your local government to regulate child labor and other fair trade practices, we can create a movement to increase the standards for workers in our country and other developing countries.