Become a Licensee

Companies that use Fairtrade have a positive impact on the lives of farmers and workers across the globe and can easily communicate to their customers that they make or sell trusted ethical products.

By reading this, you've already taken a step to ethically and sustainably source Fairtrade for your business. Answer the questions below before taking the next step and speaking to one of our team about how you can become a Fairtrade licensee or be involved in another way.

Licensee checklist

Are you US based?

  • We can only register companies that use Fairtrade based in the United States. If you are in another country, please email questions@fairtradeamerica.org
     to find the best Fairtrade contact.  

Do the products that you work with fit under the Fairtrade standards?

  • We have Fairtrade Standards for certain commodities (like coffee, cocoa and bananas) that will allow for the most impact to the lives of farmers and workers in developing countries. Click here to see which commodities we cover. If you do not see a product listed, get in touch and we may be able to set a new standard for it.

Are you planning to sell a finished, packaged product that carries the FAIRTRADE Mark?

  • If your business is trading commodities or ingredients, as opposed to final products, visit our Trader application page. If you deal with finished Fairtrade products, which are purchased from a distributor or licensee and bear the FAIRTRADE Mark, see the Using Fairtrade with My Brand page for information on how to promote your Fairtrade products.

Are your products in accordance with Fairtrade’s ingredient/content specifications?

  • Products must comprise of a minimum quantity of Fairtrade materials/ingredients to be able to carry the FAIRTRADE Mark. Please check these specifications on our product composition page.

Ready to become a company that uses Fairtrade? Follow these steps:

To do obtain a license, you need to:

  • Apply to become registered as a licensee with Fairtrade America.
  • Apply to become a certified partner with our certification body, FLOCERT.
  • Submit an application for each Fairtrade product you wish to bring to market.
  • Have product packaging artwork approved. All promotional use of the FAIRTRADE Mark must also be approved in writing.

Fairtrade America’s Commercial Relations team is dedicated to providing end-to-end support through the process of Fairtrade certification. We can work with you to source Fairtrade certified commodities and ingredients developing a new supply chain. Alternatively our team can assist with the process of getting your present supply chain certified. 

If you have any questions contact questions@fairtradeamerica.org or call 202.391.0525.

Step 1: Tell us about your business

A member of our Commercial Relations team will follow up with you. If you are ready to submit an application, please send your Business Overview Questionnaire.

At the same time, the US division of FLOCERT will send you an application package for the certification process. This package also contains a business questionnaire but focuses on different aspects.

Step 2: Apply to become a licensee

Please contact license@fairtradeamerica.org to request an application.

Once your application has been reviewed by the Commercial Relations team, the license contract will be emailed to you. When we receive back your signed contract, a countersigned contract will be sent back to you with a Welcome Kit. At this time you will also be contacted by one of our Commercial Relations Coordinators who will be your main contact going forward.

Step 3: Submit your product application(s)

Once submitted, your application is assessed by our Licensing Department to ensure they have been completed correctly, that each product complies with the Fairtrade Standards and that all supply chains are certified or registered. All packaging and promotional materials must be sent for our approval prior to printing, though no additional paperwork is required for this process. The Mark Use and Statement Guidelines (PDF) specifies how the FAIRTRADE Mark should appear on your packaging and other materials.

Results

Once you have at least one approved license package, your company will be added to our list of registered operators which appears publicly on our website. You will be able to order Fairtrade promotional materials and begin promoting your Fairtrade certified products to the market.

An approved Fairtrade certified article list will be sent to you outlining which products are approved for sale in the country you sell products to. This documentation is your formal approval that your products comply with the Fairtrade International Standards.