• Fairtrade

    19 February 2020

    Dear Constituent,

    Thank you for contacting me about Fairtrade.

    Fairtrade is about better prices, decent working conditions, local sustainability, and fair terms of trade for farmers and workers in the developing world. I fully align myself with these goals, and I think it is important that we continue to support the Fairtrade initiative.

    Between 2010 and 2018, Department for International Development (DFID) invested over £20.2 million into Fairtrade to strengthen the global Fairtrade system. This includes Fairtrade producer and worker organisations that contribute to inclusive economic, environmental and social development around the world. There are over 1.66 million farmers and workers spread across 73 countries participating in Fairtrade. DFID funding helped support the development of ‘Fairtrace’, a technology-based supply chain mapping tool, which has helped Fairtrade broaden its commercial customer base and helps brands and consumers better understand where their products come from.

    I want to see a world where all workers are paid enough to escape poverty, and where they do not have to work in unsafe conditions. DFID continues to improve standards through the ISEAL Alliance, the umbrella organisation that represents all sustainability standards. Work has been scaled up, including promoting international standards such as the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, supporting organisations such as the Ethical Trading Initiative that encourage businesses to pay more living wages,  and placing pressure on businesses, through programmes including ShareAction’s Workforce Disclosure Initiative.

    While it remains a commercial decision on whether or not to stock Fairtrade products and adopt Fairtrade Principles, I am encouraged that the Government works with the British Retail Consortium to help retailers ensure their supply chains are ethically sound.

    Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.

    Yours sincerely,

    Mel Stride MP

    MP for Central Devon