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Showing posts tagged “Fairtrade”

With 1,750 members, the democratically organized Manduvira Cooperative exports #Fairtrade Certified Organic sugar to nearly 20 countries in the world. Read more here:
With 1,750 members, the democratically organized Manduvira Cooperative exports #Fairtrade Certified Organic sugar to nearly 20 countries in the world. Read more here:

Back to School Recipes

It’s just about time to send your kids back to school. Make sure they are
going with healthy and Fairtrade snacks! Wholesome Sweeteners has complied a list of delicious and kid-friendly treats for lunch. The Chocolate Avocado Recipe below is our favorite

Chocolate Avocado Pudding


2 large avocados, pitted and peeled

1 cup chocolate almond milk

1/4 cup Wholesome Sweeteners Fairtrade Organic Amber Honey

1/4 cup Fairtrade cocoa powder

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 tsp cinnamon

pinch of gray sea salt


Blend everything in a high speed blender until smooth.

New Living Wage Benchmarks Points The Way Forward:

Originally posted by Fairtrade International on June 10, 2014.

Three reports published today set new living wage benchmarks for rural South Africa, Dominican Republic and Malawi.

The reports, commissioned by Fairtrade International (Western Cape, South Africa), Fairtrade and Social Accountability International (Dominican Republic), and Fairtrade, Sustainable Agriculture Network/Rainforest Alliance and UTZ Certified (Malawi) have been prepared by international experts Richard and Martha Anker[1] pioneering a new living wage methodology. The methodology is a major step forward in measuring living wage and can be used in any country for either rural or urban areas.

The reports document worker needs in a detailed yet simple, transparent way that everyone can understand. The reports clearly indicate the cost of a basic but decent standard of living for workers and their families. They also compare living wage estimates with current wages and include innovative ways to estimate fair and reasonable values for in-kind benefits.

Workers and employers in all three countries participated in the process to set the living wage benchmarks, and have given predominantly very positive feedback on the findings. With project co-ordination from our office in Bonn and together with local teams, the Ankers investigated the actual costs of workers on South African wine grape farms, Dominican Republic banana farms, and Malawi tea farms. We are also grateful for the support which field staff of Ethical Tea Partnership and Oxfam provided during the study in Malawi.

The teams visited markets where workers shop for food, visited workers homes, had discussions with workers as well as small farm owners, cooperative officers, plantation managers and owners, municipal officials, trade union members, university professors, architects and others. They also used many papers, reports and statistics from researchers, government agencies, and international organizations.[2]

The living wage for the wine grape growing region of Western Cape in South Africa was calculated to be ZAR 2385 per month (US$230) for permanent workers who receive free housing, free transportation to town each week as well as a 13th month bonus. For seasonal workers, it was ZAR 3122 per month (US$302).

In rural Dominican Republic the estimated living wage is DOP 11,966 per month (US$277) on farms that provide free transport, breakfast and lunch, or DOP 13,869 (US$319) per month without in-kind benefits.

In Malawi the living wage is K32,392 per month (US$75) when workers receive common in-kind benefits including lunch on workdays, health clinic, school building and crèche, and recreational services, or K35,222 per month (US$82) when no in-kind benefits are provided.

In all three countries the current national minimum wage falls short of the living wage estimates. In South Africa the gap is moderate for permanent workers (5%) but large for seasonal workers. In Dominican Republic and Malawi, the difference is substantial for all workers.

“These reports show us just how much work lies ahead. Finally we have clear numbers on what is a living wage, and the gap we must work towards closing,” said Wilbert Flinterman, Fairtrade International’s Senior Adviser on Workers’ Rights and Trade Union Relations.

The revised Fairtrade Standard for Hired Labor, which comes into effect in June, will require employers to negotiate with workers’ representatives on wages and make annual increases on real wages towards the living wage. It also opens the possibility for workers to spend up to 20% of the Fairtrade Premium as a bonus payment if they choose.

“All organizations involved in the research agree that there is no magic solution to quickly fix the low wage levels in developing countries that supply agricultural commodities to global markets,” stressed Flinterman. “Instead, we are strongly committed to fighting the causes of poverty among workers with a combination of our own interventions plus collaboration with other certifiers, NGOs and multi-stakeholder platforms, local employers, unions, buyers of agricultural commodities and retailers.”

Fairtrade has committed to seeking solutions for low wages together with other voluntary standards organizations in the ISEAL network.

In addition to the South Africa, Dominican Republic and Malawi studies, Fairtrade International has co-funded a living wage study with SAN/Rainforest Alliance and UTZ Certified for Kenya based on workers’ costs on flower plantations. This study is due to be published shortly.

Following this, Fairtrade International will work with partners to develop plans for moving toward living wage levels in all regions around the world where we have Fairtrade certified plantations and hired labor set-ups.

Download the Living Wage reports here.

Read more about Fairtrade’s living wage project here.

[1] Richard Anker is an economist retired from International Labour Organization (ILO) and an expert on labor, poverty and development. He has worked extensively on measurement of living wages and decent work and written a comprehensive review of living wages published by ILO (2011). He is currently a visiting scholar at the Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts.

Martha Anker is a statistician, retired from World Health Organization (WHO), who has extensive experience rapid assessment methodologies, and health and gender issues. She is currently adjunct faculty at the School of Public Health and Health Sciences, University of Massachusetts.

[2] Estimates of expenses for food are based on the local cost of a locally acceptable, inexpensive, nutritious diet that meets WHO/FAO standards for nutrition. Estimates of expenses for housing are based on the local cost of basic housing that meets international and national standards of acceptability. Estimates for other costs, which are based on available survey data, are checked to make sure that enough money is available for education and healthcare as these are akin to basic human rights.

Sustainability Standards

Did you know Fairtrade follows the ISEAL Code of Good Practice for Standard Setting? It is the global reference for sustainability standards. We also consult producers & business partners to regularly review our standards and prices. Find out more about how the #Fairtrade standards & prices are set:

Happy National Ice Cream Month!

Celebrate and cool down this month, with this delicious & Fairtrade ice cream recipe from Green & Black’s Chocolate. Don’t forget to use Fairtrade sugar as well! 

3 extra-large free-range egg yolks

½ cup superfine sugar

2/3 cup milk

2/3 cup heavy cream

2 oz dark (70% cocoa solids) chocolate, grated

3 ½ oz dark (85% cocoa solids) chocolate, grated

½ cup buttermilk

Put the egg yolks with half the sugar in a medium bowl andwhisk until light, fluffy, and pale in color. Heat the milk and cream togetherwith the remaining sugar to just under boiling point. Pour the cream mixtureinto the yolks and whisk until blended. Immediately return to the pan and cookover medium heat until it begins to thicken. Do not allow to boil.

Add the grated chocolate and stir until smooth. Add thebuttermilk and stir under well blended.

Strain into a chilled bowl and cool. Once cool, pour into anice-cream maker and churn following the manufacturer’s instructions. Keep inthe freezer until required. It is best served within 12 hours of churning, butwill keep well for at least 1 week in the freezer.

Paraguayan Pride: Farmers Open World’s First Fairtrade Organic Sugar Mill

Fairtrade sugar farmers from the remote Manduvira Cooperative in western Paraguay are celebrating an extraordinary achievement – the ribbon-cutting of the world’s first producer-owned Fairtrade organic sugar mill.

Originally posted by Fairtrade International on May 23, 2014.

Monika Berresheim of Fairtrade International presents a plaque to the managers of Manduvira.

Over 2,000 attended the opening of Manduvira’s new sugar mill.

Detail of Manduvira’s sugar mill

Teresa Alejandra Pereira, Executive Secretary of Manduvira and sugar farmer

23 May 2014

Manduvira’s new mill will be a boon for the 1,750 member-strong farmers’ organization, which will no longer have to pay to rental and transport costs to another mill, 100 km away along dirt roads. This $15 million project was funded through a combination of national and international loans, contributions from the Fairtrade Premium, and the Fairtrade Access Fund.

“This is what we want to see - producers who think big,” said Gustavo Leite, Paraguay’s Minister of Industry and Trade, as he congratulated the producers and cooperative leaders.

Paraguay’s Vice President, John Eudes Afara Maciel, joined Leite and other government ministers and sugar farmers at the launch of the venture on April 24th. The mill has the capacity to process 200,000 MT of organic sugar cane a year – producing 20,000MT of sugar. This figure could potentially treble in the years to come. A profit of $1 million is predicted for the first year.

“Our dream of a sugar mill owned by a cooperative and not by private ‘empresarios’ has come true,” said Andres Gonzales Manduvira’s, General Manager, who was visibly delighted at the achievement of his colleagues.

The Manduvira Cooperative exports certified organic and Fairtrade sugar to almost 20 countries, including most of Europe, Canada, Latin America, New Zealand and South Korea. Fairtrade staff have worked with the producer group helping it to achieve organic certification and long-term relationships with international clients.

“Huge congratulations to Manduvira for taking greater control of the value chain and ensuring benefits remain in its community,” said Monika Berresheim-Kleinke, Global Product Manager for Sugar at Fairtrade International, who attended the event alongside more than 2,000 others.

Martin Hill, Fairtrade’s Executive Commercial Officer, added: “We’re confident that Manduvira and its members will take on this exciting new responsibility and turn it into successful marketing and increased sales of Fairtrade sugar.”

The mill has nearly 200 employees, including farmers’ sons and daughters, who previously had left the area to find work or attend school in the capital, Asuncion, but who have now returned.

“The cooperative creates new jobs. This new mill will give new opportunities for members and non-members, really the entire community,” said Teresa Alejandra Pereira, who serves as Executive Secretary of Manduvira and also helps her father manage their 3 hectare farm.

The farmers believe the quality of their sugar will also benefit from the new mill with the freshly cut cane arriving sooner for processing than in the past. Bagasse, a by-product of processing sugar, will generate energy for the mill and the cooperative is asking for permission to deliver power to the wider community and beyond.

Gonzalez told the attendees that, before Fairtrade, Manduvira’s members struggled with an unjust system. Fairtrade enabled them to negotiate with the mill 100km away to process their sugar. They then realized that to increases sales and have control over their own product they needed to invest in their own mill, one closer to their farms.

“Every community needs and can seek a better quality of life,” Gonzalez added. “Ours is a dream that has come true thanks to Fairtrade. We thank consumers, volunteers, people who work in shops, national initiatives … all the people who are part of Fairtrade.

"I say to our fellow smallholders in Paraguay and around the world not to stop fighting for their dreams. Anything is possible when you believe and when you work.”

Read more about Manduvira Cooperative in our ‘Meet the Producers’ section.

Fairtrade Farm Goes Solar

Originally posted by Fairtrade New Zealand on May 6, 2013. To learn more about the Neknasi Coffee Cooperative of Papa New Guinea check out this overview of the Fairtrade Farm.

As the sun sets on another long day of hard work out in the coffee fields normally you would hear the sound of the generator kick in to power the lights so that members of the Neknasi Coffee Cooperative can continue working into the night discussing issues affecting the community.

But tonight it’s different, there is silence – but lights are on! Thanks to a great act of sustainable solidarity by the Conscious Consumer network NZ … Neknasi have gone solar!

As part of Fairtrade Fortnight last year the conscious consumer carrot mobraised over $2000 dollars – enough to buy a solar power system for Neknasi coffee farmers who now have a renewable energy source to power their evening discussions.


Views of the Neknasi Cooperative meeting house inside and out

The solar system provides enough energy to power the lights for 4 rooms in the meeting house and communal kitchen as well as powering the cooperative’s computer and printer.

It hasn’t been without its challenges though; lost instruction manuals required a bit of PNG ingenuity to complete the installation and Neknasi’s location in the “misty mountains” can mean less sunshine hours to charge the batteries during the wet season but summer is here, the sun is shining strong and the cooperative have noticed the difference.


Typical day during the wet season

"We used to use 5ltrs a day of petrol powering our meeting house, but with the solar panel our power costs have halved. This is a great benefit for us as it means we can carry on with our meetings later in the evenings and that we don’t need to do so many trips to town (over 3 hours away by dirt track) to get gas," says Dangi Ternum, Secretary of the Neknasi Cooperative.

Dangi Ternum, Neknasi Secretary in his sun powered office

The farmers of the Neknasi Cooperative would like to thank the cafes and consumers that took part the carrotmob for supporting Fairtrade and going the extra mile with their kind gift that keeps giving!

Tenkiu tru!

Pravin Sawmy
Fairtrade ANZ

Ben & Jerry’s Giveaway


Eating Fairtrade ice cream – what a delicious way to show your support for small farmers! Ben & Jerry’s is committed to sourcing Fairtrade certified ingredients for all of its products. That’s using their power to help farmers build a better future for themselves. You can show your power to make change by choosing Fairtrade products – enter our World Fair Trade Day Facebook contest TODAY to win free Ben & Jerry’s ice cream! And learn more about their commitment to Fairtrade here:

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