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Fair Trade - Questions & Answers
What are the benefits to producers of Fair Trade products?Fair Trade enables producers to improve their living and working conditions, and to invest in their farms. It enables them to provide clean water, sanitation, basic medical treatment, food, housing and education for the community.
What has the Fair Trade campaign achieved so far?Fair Trade foods are now mainstream products and sales have increased year after year. For producers, it has made a real tangible difference, enabling them to earn an improved standard of living and longer-term security. Buying Fair Trade products is a clear demonstration to governments of developed countries that consumers (and hence ) care about unfair trade rules.
What are the environmental credentials of Fair Trade products?Providing rural producers with an opportunity to earn a sustainable livelihood is a vital environmental benefit in it’s own right. In addition, environmental criteria are incorporated into the specific product standards for many Fair Trade foods such as bananas.
Can I try Fair Trade samples?Yes. If you contact the suppliers most producers of Fair Trade products will provide samples on request.
Are Fair Trade products available from suppliers in my area?There are many suppliers and distributors of Fair Trade products. Equita from Oxfam Fair trade is one (1 877 925 6001) or call Transfair Canada (1 888 663 FAIR).
Does Fair Trade coffee cost more than other varieties?Not necessarily. Many organisations have discovered that it costs no more than their previous products but even where it does, this often works out at no more than 2-5¢ per cup. You may even find that some Fair Trade coffee is cheaper than well-known brands.
How can my union and workplace support Fair Trade?There are many ideas for practical action contained in this guide. To start, you could take the following steps :
What have other unions and workplaces done?Many unions in Canada, in the UK, Europe and around the world support Fair Trade. They are committed to publicising and promoting Fair Trade as well as purchasing it for themselves. Many workers are campaigning to get Fair Trade foods in their catering.
What is the quality and range of Fair Trade coffees like?Try them, and you’ll discover that Fair Trade products are of the highest quality. There is now a range of premium quality Fair Trade coffees to suit all tastes. This includes freshly roasted filter, espresso, cappuccino, single origin, blends and organic. For outlets which prefer to grind the beans for the drinks that they sell, Fair Trade coffee beans can be supplied with grind 'n' serve equipment.
Do Fair Trade coffee suppliers offer the machines free on loan?Many of them provide standard pour-over machines. Some also offer other coffee making equipment, including machines for grinding, making cappuccino and espresso, serving flasks, and vending machines.
What products are currently available?A wide range of coffee, tea, chocolates, hot chocolate, cocoa, sugar and rice are available.
What products will become available soon?New products are being introduced all the time. Contact Transfair Canada for information on new products. www.transfair.ca/en/transfair
How do you know it’s Fair Trade?Most Fair Trade products bear the Fair trade Certified Mark on the packaging. This mark is established by Transfair Canada who is the only independent guarantee to Canadian consumers that farmers in developing countries are getting a fair deal for their products.
Additional materials are available from:Oxfam Canada: www.oxfam.caEquita: www.equita.qc.ca [Link Removed - June 12, 2012]
From: Equita in conjunction with Oxfam Canada