In 1992, Traidcraft jointly founded the Fairtrade Foundation and helped establish the standards that underpin today’s well-known Fairtrade Mark.
For a company to use the Fairtrade mark, the Fairtrade ingredients in its products must come from small scale farming organisations or plantations that meet the Fairtrade standards which include:
- Protection of workers’ rights and the environment
- Payment of the Fairtrade minimum wage
- Payment of an additional premium to invest in business and community projects.
The producers themselves decide how the premium is used and that usually means investment in schools, transport, health care, sanitation, an improved environment and better business equipment and practices.
For large businesses using the Fairtrade mark, making a profit is still the bottom line and this is where Traidcraft is different.
When you buy Traidcraft goods you are making a direct connection with some small producer; whether it is a member of a co-operative producing honey or coffee or a women’s group in India who create the beautiful embroidery you see on Traidcraft bags and purses.
It is often difficult for us to realize that in many developing countries poverty actually means not having enough money to feed your children.
One such an example is the story of Kohinoor from Bangladesh. She had difficulty growing rice in her fields because of the soil and did not have enough money to feed her family and buy books for the children’s schooling. With Traidcraft’s help and support she was able to switch from growing rice to growing tea which gives a much higher yield. She now earns enough money to feed her family and her children are at school again.
Poor housing and poor sanitation often causes ill health and if the father in a family cannot work there are often very few opportunities for women to become wage earners. Traidcraft encourages the formation of women’s groups who can share knowledge and experience and provide support for each other.
The Traidcraft organization has a charitable arm called Traidcraft Exchange which is involved in raising funds which are used to develop projects like the FairPalm project in Ghana where Traidcraft has helped small farmers to farm the palms efficiently and the oil processing unit employs local people on fair wages in a remote area of Africa with few employment opportunities. In addition they fund local community projects: for example providing clean water to villages where previously the women had to spend a large part of their day travelling to obtain water.
This year the UK government has promised that our donations to Traidcraft Exchange will be doubled from 12th January to 11th April so please support our two fundraising Big Brew events.
If you cannot come to either of these events you may wish to make a donation. You can be sure that your support for Traidcraft is making a real difference to someone’s life by enabling them to afford the necessities of life which we take for granted.
THE BIG BREW 2018
Enjoy a cuppa and a chat at:
Chingford URC, Buxton Road, Chingford
Friday 2nd March, 9.30am to 12 noon
St. James’ URC, Buckhurst Hill
Tuesday 6th March, 10.00am till 12 noon
Home made cakes for sale and also Traidcraft food and gifts.