The concept of Fairtrade

Fairtrade is a strategy for fighting poverty. Guaranteed minimum prices and a Fairtrade premium give farmers in Africa, Latin America and Asia the possibility to strengthen their communities and families through their own efforts and to improve their long-term working and living conditions. Fairtrade helps smallholder producers and workers to have their say on the world market, gain recognition and make their own decisions.

For further information about Fairtrade, visit:

Fairtrade Organizations International (FLO)

Max Havelaar Foundation, the national Fairtrade labelling initiative for Switzerland

Other national labelling initiatives

Why is Fairtrade necessary for cotton?

The world cotton market is influenced by the subsidies OECD members – and in particular by the United States and EU countries – provide to their producers. These subsidies have led to overproduction and a worldwide collapse in prices. As a result, producers in the North (125,000 farmers) receive support while the weakest in the South are confronted with crippling problems (10 million farmers). The consequences of these policies include debt, unemployment and extreme poverty.

Fairtrade helps to break this cycle and to protect farmers through a combination of minimum prices and Fairtrade and organic premiums.

Further reading:

Indian cotton farmer Himikika Chellema describes the positive effects of Fairtrade: Portrait of the Indian cotton farmer Himikika Chellema and positive effects of fair-trade (only available in German)

Portrait of the Burkinabe organcic cotton producer Yonli Malata and her view of fair-trade (only in German)

Further information about Fairtrade



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