New Fairtrade Sourcing Programs give farmers new opportunities to sell

(by Fairtrade International)

Nowadays only 1.2% of the cocoa in the world is sold on Fairtrade International’s standard terms, and it is even less for sugar and cotton. At the same time, the potential for growth is huge; more and more businesses are making commitments to ‘responsible sourcing’ – showing that buying fair and sustainable commodities is a core part of how they do business.

The new Fairtrade Sourcing Programs for cocoa, sugar and cotton connect farmers working with Fairtrade International with companies wanting to buy these specific commodities on Fairtrade International terms for an use across ranges, or even for their whole business. It’s one more way for businesses to work with Fairtrade International, certifying and labeling their products with the FAIRTRADE Mark. All these kind of commitments are aimed to add up to more sales of Fairtrade farmers’ crops, gaining more of the Fairtrade benefits for their communities. This represents a massive opportunity for the farmers to tap their potential.

Nonetheless, the new Sourcing Programs have the same high standards of Fairtrade International. Producers will continue to receive all the same benefits provided in the Fairtrade International standards, including the protection of a Minimum Price and the Fairtrade Premium.

Fairtrade International has developed a new Mark that represents this different approach by the businesses involved and at the same time gives Fairtrade Sourcing Programs their own identity. This label can be used by companies on pack, online and in corporate reports. On the other hand, it lets shoppers know that these brands are part of the new Fairtrade Sourcing Programs.


There are still some precise indications that have to be followed: for Cocoa and Sugarcompanies will only be able to use the FAIRTRADE Program Mark on-pack if 100% of the focus ingredient for that product is bought on Fairtrade International’s terms. On the Cotton side, companies can use the new Program Mark once they have met an agreed volume of Fairtrade cotton. Companies can use the Program Mark on a swing-tag attached to items if they have sourced enough Fairtrade cotton to cover the equivalent of 100% of that product range or collection. Having regard to all of the three crops, businesses can also talk about their Fairtrade commitments in off-product communications, such as websites.

The new Fairtrade Sourcing Program is also explained in this video.


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