Fair Trade and the Citizen-Consumer: Shopping for Justice? (Consumption and Public Life)


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This is a huge victory for farmers, whose incomes will triple when they can sell their coffee at Fair Trade prices. It is also an important win for the corporate accountability movement. Starbucks' quick capitulation in the face of nationwide protest illustrates that grass roots organizing and education can indeed bring major results. But so far, Starbucks has agreed to offer Fair Trade-certified coffee in whole bean form only: It will be available in take-home bags, but not brewed in the cafes. As soon as the beans are on Starbucks' shelves, we will be pressuring the company to offer Fair Trade-certified coffee in brewed, in-store drinks.

We will also continue encouraging Starbucks to sell Fair Trade coffee on campuses and to increase their purchases generally. The anti-sweatshop movement has struggled for years to answer the consumer question, "I'd be happy to stop buying from Nike or GAP, but what should I buy instead? When it comes to our daily brew, an independently monitored alternative finally exists—one that sets a standard for fair trade in the global economy. She is also Chair of the Fair Trade Federation. Like this article? Support our work.

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Dr Katy Wheeler

Don't have an account? Sign in via your Institution. Sign in with your library card. Search within Critics argue that fair trade harms all non-Fairtrade farmers. Fair trade claims that its farmers are paid higher prices and are given special advice on increasing yields and quality. Economists [27] [ self-published source ] [] [] [] [] [] state that, if this is indeed so, Fairtrade farmers will increase production.

Fair Trade and the Citizen-Consumer: Shopping for Justice?

As the demand for coffee is highly elastic, a small increase in supply means a large fall in market price, so perhaps a million Fairtrade farmers get a higher price and 24 million others get a substantially lower price. Critics quote the example of farmers in Vietnam being paid over the world price in the s, planting lots of coffee, then flooding the world market in the s. The fair trade minimum price means that when the world market price collapses, it is the non-fair trade farmers, particularly the poorest, who have to cut down their coffee trees. This argument is supported by mainstream economists, not just free marketers.

He also points to the failure to disclose when 'the primary commercial intent' is to make money for retailers and distributors in rich countries. Philip Booth says that the selling techniques used by some sellers and some supporters of fair trade are bullying, misleading, and unethical. However, the opposite has been argued, that a more participatory and multi-stakeholder approach to auditing might improve the quality of the process. Some people argue that these practices are justifiable: that strategic use of labeling may help embarrass or encourage major suppliers into changing their practices.

They may make transparent corporate vulnerabilities that activists can exploit. Or they may encourage ordinary people to get involved with broader projects of social change. There are complaints that the standards are inappropriate and may harm producers, sometimes making them work several months more for little return.

Adherence to fair trade standards by producers has been poor, and enforcement of standards by Fairtrade is weak. Notably by Christian Jacquiau [] and by Paola Ghillani, who spent four years as president of Fairtrade Labelling Organizations [] There are many complaints of poor enforcement problems: labourers on Fairtrade farms in Peru are paid less than the minimum wage; [] some non-Fairtrade coffee is sold as Fairtrade [] 'the standards are not very strict in the case of seasonally hired labour in coffee production.

It reported that "The FT was also handed evidence of at least one coffee association that received an organic, Fair Trade or other certifications despite illegally growing some 20 per cent of its coffee in protected national forest land. Segments of the trade justice movement have also criticized fair trade in the past years for allegedly focusing too much on individual small producer groups while stopping short of advocating immediate trade policy changes that would have a larger effect on disadvantaged producers' lives.

There have been largely political criticisms of fair trade from the left and the right. Some believe the fair trade system is not radical enough. Jacquiau also supports significantly higher fair trade prices in order to maximize the effect, as most producers only sell a portion of their crop under fair trade terms.

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Main article: History of fair trade. Main article: Fair trade certification. Main article: Alternative trading organization. Main article: Worldshop. Main article: Fair trade coffee.

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See also: Protectionism and Dumping pricing policy. Main article: Fair trade debate. This article's Criticism or Controversy section may compromise the article's neutral point of view of the subject. Please integrate the section's contents into the article as a whole, or rewrite the material. February Business and economics portal. The Review of Economics and Statistics. Economic Affairs. Fair Trade: Benefits and Drawbacks for Producers. Journal of Business Ethics. Ecological Economics. Bibcode : ecec. Positive and normative analysis from a value chain perspective', Journal of Business Ethics, 86, 3— Journal of Business Ethics 79—92, Financial Times; Weitzman, H.

Ethical-coffee' workers paid below legal minimum. Fair Trade from the Ground Up.

Fair Trade Certification

University of Washington Press. Pluto Press. Fair Trade Campaigns. Retrieved Ten Thousand Villages.

Chiang Rai Fair Trade Shop - video dailymotion

The Lutheran. Archived from the original on CRS Ethical Trade. Archived from the original PDF on Archived from the original on October 22, Retrieved 24 June Charlbury, UK: One Village. London: Sage Publications. Journal of Rural Studies. Fair trade. FLO International. Retrieved 27 January Journal of Consumer Policy.

Fair Trade and the Citizen-Consumer: Shopping for Justice? (Consumption and Public Life) Fair Trade and the Citizen-Consumer: Shopping for Justice? (Consumption and Public Life)
Fair Trade and the Citizen-Consumer: Shopping for Justice? (Consumption and Public Life) Fair Trade and the Citizen-Consumer: Shopping for Justice? (Consumption and Public Life)
Fair Trade and the Citizen-Consumer: Shopping for Justice? (Consumption and Public Life) Fair Trade and the Citizen-Consumer: Shopping for Justice? (Consumption and Public Life)
Fair Trade and the Citizen-Consumer: Shopping for Justice? (Consumption and Public Life) Fair Trade and the Citizen-Consumer: Shopping for Justice? (Consumption and Public Life)
Fair Trade and the Citizen-Consumer: Shopping for Justice? (Consumption and Public Life) Fair Trade and the Citizen-Consumer: Shopping for Justice? (Consumption and Public Life)

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