News and press releases

Ivorian cooperatives call for long-term solutions to cocoa supply chain issues

The FTAO met with a delegation of cocoa producer cooperatives from the Ivorian Fair Trade Network (RICE), visiting Brussels for the Salon du Chocolat, on the 17 February 2020. This was a great opportunity for FTAO, and the other CSOs in attendance, to hear about how the policy issues that we engage with relate to the reality on the ground in producer countries.

The cooperative representatives expressed their support for a more sustainable cocoa sector and welcomed the interest that the EU has shown in making environmentally and socially sustainable cocoa supply chains a reality. read more

EU Cities for Fair and Ethical Trade: Award Launch and MEP Trip to Ghent

This week was marked by two back-to-back events organised by the International Trade Centre (ITC) and the European Commission around their EU Cities for Fair and Ethical Trade Award.

On Tuesday, 4 February, the Commission hosted a launch event for the second edition of the award in Brussels. It was an opportunity to reflect on key takeaways from the 2018 award, to provide information for applicants, and to discuss how the award is promoting and enabling the uptake of fair and ethical trade on a local level. read more

UNCTAD and Fair Trade movement host event to discuss how to share benefits more equitably in value chains

Today, the 22 January 2020, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) in collaboration with the Fair Trade Advocacy Office, hosted a debate with the title “Value chains: How to share benefits more equitably” at the UNCTAD Headquarters, the United Nations Office in Geneva. This event takes place as follow-up to the framework of cooperation signed in October 2018 between UNCTAD and the Fair Trade Advocacy Office, a joint initiative of Fairtrade International and the World Fair Trade Organization. read more

Sewing the pieces together: Towards an EU strategy for fair and sustainable textiles

The think tank ECDPM has been commissioned by Oxfam-Magasins du monde, the World Fair Trade Organization-Europe and the Fair Trade Advocacy Office with the task of developing a comprehensive study on the textile supply chains.  Sewing the pieces together: Towards an EU strategy for fair and sustainable textiles, is a research paper which assesses the available options for the EU to put in place an ambitious and integrated EU strategy in support of fair and sustainable textile supply chains. read more

The European Green Deal will not be sustainable if it is not fair

(Brussels, 12 December 2019) The Fair Trade movement welcomes the European Green Deal unveiled yesterday by the European Commission President – but calls for small farmers and workers in the Global South to be included as equal partners in a “just and inclusive” transition to more sustainable consumption and production.

“The drivers of inequality and climate change are intrinsically linked, as are the solutions,” said Sergi Corbalán, Executive Director of the Fair Trade Advocacy Office. “As the Fair Trade movement has warned during the current UN talks in Madrid, climate change exacerbates the poverty and vulnerability of small scale farmers and workers. Fairer value chains, on the other hand, can help to achieve social, ecological and financial sustainability.”

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No climate resilience without trade justice

The Fair Trade movement calls for the demands of producer organisations to be heard in the negotiations on the global climate crisis on the occasion of COP25.

(Brussels, 28.11.2019) In the run-up to the Climate Summit, the World Fair Trade movement urges Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to recognise Fair Trade policies and practices as a crucial component of climate mitigation and adaptation strategies.

Faced with droughts, floods, and unpredictable weather changes, more and more smallholder farmers are forced to leave their fields and migrate. Therefore, the Fair Trade movement calls for urgent, concrete and ambitious action to address these adverse effects of the climate crisis, which put at risk the most vulnerable populations, world food security and, by extension, the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals. read more

The link between the EU Competition Law and sustainability rises in the EU agenda

Yesterday a conference on ‘Sustainability and Competition Policy: Bridging Two Worlds to Enable a Fairer Economy’ brought high-level speakers together, including EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager.

The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC), the Committee of the Regions (CoR), the Global Competition Law Centre (GCLC) of the College of Europe, University College London (UCL), and the Fair Trade Advocacy Office (FTAO) co-organised the full-day conference ‘Sustainability and Competition Policy: Bridging Two Worlds to Enable a Fairer Economy’ yesterday in Brussels. The event brought together high-level speakers of various fields, including EU officials, Civil Society Organisations, academics, lawyers, industry experts and competition authorities.

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Fair Trade European Parliament Breakfast Highlights Fair Trade Issues to MEPs

This morning (10th October 2019) a group of Members of European Parliament (MEPs), members of civil society organisations and Fair Trade producer organisations and networks gathered in the Members Salon in the European Parliament for the annual Fair Trade breakfast.

The breakfast, which was hosted by MEP Bernd Lange (Germany) from the Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats and Chair of the International Trade Committee, and organised by the Fair Trade Advocacy Office, was attended by over 140 participants. It was possible thanks to the financial support of the European Commission and the Trade for Development Centre, in the framework of Belgium’s Fair Trade week, an initiative of the Belgian Development Cooperation.

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On the morning of the 1st October, the Make ICT Fair consortium held a breakfast event at the European Parliament in Brussels attended by around thirty participants. The event was hosted by Austrian MEP Monika Vana of the Greens/EFA and Swedish MEP Abir Al-Sahlani of Renew Europe in the Members Salon of the Parliament.

The breakfast was organised to raise awareness of sustainability and human rights abuses in the supply chain of information communication technology (ICT) products, as well as facilitate the discussion on the role of MEPs in promoting EU policies on human rights, European development banks and public procurement. read more