Who we are
The Fair Trade Advocacy Office (FTAO) speaks out on behalf of the Fair Trade movement for Fair Trade and Trade Justice with the aim to improve the livelihoods of marginalised producers and workers in the South. The FTAO is a joint initiative of Fairtrade International, the European Fair Trade Association and the World Fair Trade Organization-Europe. Through these three networks the FTAO represents an estimate of 2.5 million Fair Trade producers and workers from 70 countries, 24 labelling initiatives, over 500 specialised Fair Trade importers, 4,000 World Shops and more than 100,000 volunteers.
The FTAO was born in 2004 when the Fair Trade networks set up an informal advocacy cooperation mechanism. In December 2010, the Fair Trade networks formalised their commitment and set up the FTAO as a legally-independent foundation “Fair Trade Advocacy Office” with a clear mandate to advocate for EU policies in support of Fair Trade and Trade Justice and to strengthen the FTAO and the Fair Trade networks and their members’ capacities to interact and have an on-going dialogue with the EU Institutions. The FTAO Secretariat is based in Brussels.