How fair is fair trade?
Fair trade is designed to help farmers in the developing world organize and negotiate higher prices on commodities like coffee, cocoa, and sugar. But according to a new report, fair trade may not be delivering its intended benefits.
Chocolate macadamia will hardly end world poverty all by itself, but Ben and Jerry's, and companies like it, believe if enough people support fair trade, many impoverished farmers will earn a better living...
It's an attractive idea, and it's hoped consumers in the developed world would pay a little more for products with a fair trade certification. Fairtrade International, one of the world's largest certifiers of fair trade goods, works with more than a million farmers world-wide.
But as it turns out, we may have good reason to wonder about the benefits of that fair trade stamp. According to a new report, fair trade may not be having its intended benefits.
Christopher Cramer is an economist at the University of London. He and his colleagues looked at the wages being paid to workers in Ethiopia and Uganda, and found some disturbing results.
- Christopher Cramer is an economist with the University of London's School of Oriental and African Studies. He's also the co-author of a new report called Fairtrade, Employment and Poverty Reduction in Ethiopia and Uganda.
- Harriet Lamb is the CEO of Fairtrade International, one of the largest fair trade certification groups.
Does this new study about make you rethink how you shop?
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This segment was produced by The Current's Gord Westmacott and Sarah Grant.