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Fairtrade is a Fair Trade certificate. What is a certificate? Read about in the BrandWiki Guidelines. see all add new

Certificate details

Fairtrade International aims to secure better trade terms for farmers and workers.
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Issuer: Fairtrade International (FLO) certificate website

Certified brands: Manner
BrandWiki's opinion:

trustworthy and sustainable Greenpeace Label Check AT 2018

According to Greenpeace, the „mass balance“ must be seen critical. Positive factors are the influence on production conditions, minimum prices for farmers, GMO-free production, a high percentage of organic products, support for small farming structures.

Not all trade is fair! Farmers and workers at the beginning of the chain don’t always get a fair share of the benefits of trade. Fairtrade enables consumers to put this right.
Source: Source fairtrade.net

Fairtrade wants to improve relationships between producers and consumers. Fairtrade defines fairtrade standards, that need to be complied to by products who want to carry that mark. Standards include:

  • Standards for small producers
  • Standards for hired labour
  • Standards for contract production
  • Trader Standard
  • Climate Standard
  • Textile Standard

The goals for these standards are foremost to ensure adequate prices for sustainable production. Furthermore, they also try to provide a Fairtrade Premium (a payment) for investment in projects, pre-financing for producers, etc. There are core requirements and those of continuous development to be met – around social, economical, environmental development and around labour.

The organisation for auditing this whole process is FLOCERT.

Licensing happens via national organisations, e.g. for German speaking countries it's Transfair in Germany, Max Mavelaar-Stiftung in Switzerland and Fairtrade Austria.

Naming conventions

In terms of naming conventions (file offline), see Fair Trade as the concept, Fairtrade as the brand by Fairtrade International (FLO) with its Fairtrade organizations, as opposed to Fair Trade organizations, which are alternative trade organizations (or ATO) following the Fair Trade principles. The certificate is called FAIRTRADE Mark with capital letters.


The FAIRTRADE Mark is mainly a social mark.

The mark with the arrow is for products with multiple ingredients, like chocolate bars or cereal.

Mass balance means that when in production certified goods are mixed with non-certified goods (e.g. 10:90), the same percentage of final products from this production charge is allowed to carry the mark. So, 10 out of 100 final products are allowed to carry the mark, 90 are not. Sounds like a weird regulation, and that's why Greenpeace sees it critical.

Fair Trade critique

Fair Trade as a concept has also been criticised:

  • There is no restriction for the declaration of something as "fair", many different unofficial labels make it difficult for the consumer.
  • Only parts of raw materials in the finished product can be fair trade, but the percentage is not declared.
  • Fraud certification marks on products have also been found, i.e. production environment for products with a label have found to not necessarily be better than for products without a label.


Further reading