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FWP Asks Kroger to Expand Fair Trade Partnerships

FWP applauds Kroger’s commitment to fair trade while asking the retailer to partner with all fair trade labels rather than focus on only one.

Fair World Project Letter to ISEAL

Fair World Project Letter to ISEAL regarding Fair Trade USA Membership Application
ISEAL Alliance is a membership organization with a mission to strengthen sustainability standards. Fair Trade USA has applied for membership and FWP submitted this letter to ISEAL highlighting areas FTUSA may need additional support in meeting ISEAL’s principles and codes.

Fair Trade: A Movement for All

Fair World Project joins leaders of the fair trade movement to support trade that is truly equitable for all, including artisans, farmers and workers, traders and brands, consumers and civil society.
As the U.S. considers renegotiating or entering into new international trade agreements, we encourage the inclusion of true fair trade principles. Fair trade will never be about exclusion, but about expanding the benefits of trade for those who need it most.

The Evolving Relationship Between Fairtrade and Cadbury – Good News or Bad?

In fall 2016 Cadbury announced it would discontinue use of fair trade seal on chocolate bars. Cadbury was never a fair trade company and should not have been presented as one, yet rather than simply drop misleading claim, Cadbury will replace it with claims based on corporate-led community development program endorsed by Fairtrade International. FWP breaks it down with this statement.

Read Fair World Projects Statement [.pdf]

Positive Progress Between Sakuma Brothers Farm and Familias Unidas por la Justicia
August 30, 2016

Fair World Project is pleased to report positive progress in talks between Sakuma Brothers Farm
(Sakuma) and Familias Unidas por la Justicia (FUJ), where FUJ, an independent farmworker union, has been asking to negotiate a contract with
management on behalf of farmworkers since 2013.

Read Fair World Projects Update [.pdf]

Groups Ask Driscoll’s to Follow Through on Commitment to Workers

More than thirty organizations sent a letter to Driscoll’s asking the berry company to make good on its commitment to freedom of association and right to collective bargaining at Sakuma Brothers Farm and beyond.

Read Fair World Projects Letter [.pdf]

Thousands Sign in Support of Farmworkers in Washington

On May 26, 2016 Fair World Project mailed a petition signed by nearly 10,000 consumers to Sakuma Brothers Farm asking management to sit down and negotiate a fair contract with farmworkers there.

Read the letter that accompanied the petition [.pdf]
See the signatures and comments submitted…

Fair World Project Outlines Concerns with Fair Trade USA’s Domestic Farmworker Initiative

Fair World Project, supported by ten other organizations, submitted this letter to Fair Trade USA asking that they label domestic produce from large-scale farms distinctly and that they increase and formalize their partnerships with democratic farmworker organizations. In these ways, Fair Trade USA will not only strengthen their own program, they will do so without undermining other farmworker-led domestic farmworker programs or small-scale farmer programs in the Global South.

View the Letter and its Concerns for Fair Trade USA’s Domestic Farmworker Initiative[.pdf]

FWP opposes multi-million dollar contract to Tyson

The Los Angeles Unified School District is a leader in institutional purchasing with their option of a Good Food Purchasing policy encouraging fair, humane, and environmentally sustainable food. However, Tyson, despite a supply chain that is the opposite of these values, was considered for a large contract with the district because of their ability to provide some chicken products that other companies could not. FWP sent this letter to the school district board urging them to reject the contract with Tyson and uphold their values, even if it meant needing to adjust menus.

Read FWP’s letter opposing multi-million dollar contract to Tyson [.pdf]

ICI Responds Re: Cocoa Pricing

After nearly 10,000 consumers wrote to the International Cocoa (ICI) Institute asking them to include pricing as part of their cocoa strategy, ICI responded with this letter acknowledging that farmer income is one of several important factors in ending child slavery in the sector, but falling short of committing to address pricing directly.

Read International Cocoa Initiative’s Response [.pdf]

Letter to Fair Trade USA regarding stakeholder engagement

Eight organizations submitted a letter to Fair Trade USA to clarify the stakeholder engagement process and expectations for their new domestic farmworker standards.

Read the Letter to Fair Trade USA [.pdf]

FWP Letter to Editor San Francisco Chronicle

FWP director Dana Geffner submitted this letter to the San Francisco Chronicle in response to the inaccurate information contained in the Guide to Fair Trade Labels published on September 8, 2015. The original guide can be found here on the San Francisco Chronicle website…

Read FWP Letter to San Francisco Chronicle [.pdf]

FWP Follow Up to Starbucks

FWP sent a letter to Starbucks’ CEO Howard Schultz after nearly 5,000 consumers got unsatisfactory responses to letters after Starbucks’ position on free trade policies.

Read our Letter [.pdf]

Update on Driscoll’s Boycott

On March 24, 2015, Fair World Project sent a letter to Driscoll’s signed by nearly 10,000 consumers, expressing concern for farmworkers at Sakuma Brothers farm in Washington, a growing partner of Driscoll’s. Driscoll’s by inviting a dialogue on this issue. Fair World Project accepted this offer for a conversation, and reached out to representatives of the Familias Unidas por la Justicia union from Sakuma Brothers farm and representatives from allied organizations. This is an update from this meeting.
Read the full update [.pdf]

FWP Responds to Yes! Magazine’s analysis of fair trade vs. direct trade.

FWP writes a letter to Yes! Magazine in response to their analysis of Fair Trade vs. direct trade…
Read our letter here [.pdf file]
Read the Yes! magazine article

Nearly 10,000 Consumers Tell Driscoll’s To Be Fair
Farmworkers at Sakuma Brothers Farms have called for a boycott of the farm’s products due to concerns over pay, housing, and working conditions. Driscoll’s is one of Sakuma’s largest buyers and FWP sent a letter to Driscoll’s, signed by nearly 10,000 consumers, asking them to ensure a fair contract for farmworkers or suspend purchases for the farm.
Read our letter to Driscoll (.pdf)

FWP Letters to Nestle Re: Switch From Artificial Vanilla

In February 2015, Nestle announced they would remove artificial colors and flavors from their most popular candy bars. Fair World Project is calling them to take the next step and commit to not use synbio vanilla, a vanilla flavoring that uses genetically engineered yeast to produce, and to work with fair trade farmers to increase the impact of their decision. After an initial response from Nestle Customer Service indicating it had no intention to use synbio vanilla but no response on fair trade, FWP sent a follow up asking for a more formal statement expressing Nestle’s commitment to avoid synbio as well as a response on working with farmers on fair trade terms.
Read the Letter [pdf file]

Read the follow up letter [pdf file]
Read the summary statement of our communication [pdf file]

Broad Coalition Calls For a New Model of Trade

550+ groups reject fast-track trade promotion authority in letter to Sen. Wyden
Read the Letter [pdf file]

FWP Letter to Castle Rock Re: For Life Certification
Fair World Project responded to the press releases issued by Castle Rock Water Company regarding their achievement of For Life social certification. In both their original and updated press release, FWP felt Castle Rock implied their water was certified as fair trade when in reality the company has been certified as socially responsible. FWP believes strongly that water should not be certified fair trade and any publicity by this company should make it clear that it is not.
Read our Letter to Castle Rock Re: For Life Certification [pdf file]

FWP Inquiry to Fair for Life Regarding Certified Bottled Water

FWP sent a letter to Fair for Life regarding a press release issued by Castle Rock brand bottled water announcing their Fair for Life Certification. FWP believes that water is a right not a certifiable commodity. If Castle Rock was certified under For Life for its social responsibility as a company, FWP believes that should be clear and steps should be taken to avoid the impression that the water itself is certified fair trade, as implied in the press release.
Read our Letter to Fair For Life [pdf file]

FWP Comments on Pesticides: Agricultural Worker Protection Standard
On August 7, 2014 FWP submitted comments to the EPA commended some aspects of the proposed Agricultural Worker Protection Standard but asking them to strengthen several aspects. The statement included comments from 199 consumers supporting our stated concerns. Read the full statement submitted to the EPA.
FWP Comments on Pesticides: Agricultural Worker Protection Standard [pdf file]

Addressing Synbio and Genetic Engineering in Fair Trade and Eco-Social Certification

On June 16, Fair World Project sent letters to Fair Trade USA (FTUSA), Fairtrade International (FLO), Institute for Market Ecology (IMO), and Rainforest Alliance asking them to state and improve their positions on genetic engineering and especially synthetic biology (synbio). Synbio is a technology that allows chemical companies to create ingredients in vats via synthetic DNA inserted into microbes that are fed sugar or corn syrup. Becaues the stated intention of leading synbio manufacturers is to label and market synbio ingredients as “natural,’ they will undercut and compete unfairly with high value crops that provide sustainable livelihoods for farmers and workers. We believe eco-social and fair trade certifiers should direct brands to purchase non-GMO and non-synbio ingredients and that the inclusion of any such ingredients in a composite product should be prohibited ideally or at a minimum clearly labeled to avoid confusion.

Read our letter to Fair Trade USA (FTUSA) [pdf file]
Read our letter to Fairtrade International (FLO) [pdf file]
Read our letter to Institute for Market Ecology (IMO) [pdf file]
Read our letter to Rainforest Alliance [pdf file]

Fair World Project’s Statement in Response to the “Fair Trade Employment and Poverty Reduction in Uganda and Ethiopia Report”

The Fair Trade, Employment and Poverty Reduction Project (FTEPR) released its final report on its four-year research into agricultural labor in Ethiopia and Uganda this past April. This report focuses on complex and important issues, and highlights the prevalence of wage laborers even on small-scale fair trade farms. However, though this report contributes to our understanding of fair trade’s strengths and weaknesses, it does not mean that the fair trade model—conceived as a way to enhance opportunities and market access for small-scale farmers—is not working or should be abandoned. Read FWP’s full statement[…]

Posted on  June 9, 2014

Responses to Fairtrade International’s Fairtrade Sourcing Partnership

Fairtrade International recently released a proposal called the Fairtrade Sourcing Partnership that would allow a fair trade label (similar to the current fair trade mark used by Fairtrade International and its labeling parters such as Fairtrade America) if 100% of either sugar or cocoa are certified, even if other ingredients are not. […]

Posted on November 19, 2013

Fair World Project Statement Regarding Fair Trade USA (FTUSA) Apparel Program

Like many of you, Fair World Project is concerned with the apparel industry and the farmers and workers involved in the complex, often dangerous, supply chain. This has been especially true after the Rana Plaza disaster in Bangladesh where 1,129 workers died in April. We certainly understand the desire to believe there is a fair trade “gold standard” to assure us our clothing is ethically produced at all levels of the supply chain. Unfortunately, Fair Trade USA’s Apparel Program is not it for three main reasons.

Posted on November 5, 2013