Why Fair Trade

Every purchase supports something. Fair trade exists so we can support what’s fair.

What is fair trade?

Fair trade is a global movement made up of a diverse network of producers, companies, shoppers, advocates, and organizations putting people and planet first.

We at Fair Trade USA® believe that everyone wants to do what’s right – for their families, fellow global citizens, and the planet. That’s why we’re committed to making the right choices the most obvious ones. Based on the simple idea that the products we buy and sell are connected to the livelihoods of others, fair trade is a way to make a conscious choice for a better world. A choice for Fair Trade Certified™ goods is a choice to support responsible companies, empower farmers, workers, and fishermen, and protect the environment. In other words, it’s a world-changing way of doing business.

Impact of fair trade

Today's global market enables—often encourages—compromise at the expense of farmers, workers, and fishermen. People stand with us to demand higher standards for everyone.

Income sustainability

Earnings should fulfill basic household needs, regardless of volatile market prices. Rigorous fair trade standards ensure producers, workers, farmers, and fishermen have the money needed to invest in their lives and their work.


Fair trade empowers people to make choices for the good of themselves and their community, regardless of gender, status, position in society, or position on the globe. Rigorous standards give farmers, workers, and fishermen a voice in the workplace and the community.

Individual and community well-being

When people have the capacity to invest in better futures, the result is a healthier workforce and ultimately higher quality goods. Our model is fueled by committees of farmers, workers, and fishermen who decide how to invest their Fair Trade Community Development Funds based on their community's greatest needs: often clean water, education, and health care.

Environmental stewardship

Environmental practices have long-term impacts on the livelihoods of producers, communities, and the planet. Fair trade standards work to keep the planet healthy for generations to come by prohibiting the most harmful chemicals and taking measures to protect natural resources.

A global model for better trade

We build a global model around the concept that economic empowerment and sustainable livelihoods are the basis for a market that works for everyone.

our global model

What fair trade means

How fair trade works

Why it’s important

About us

We’re leading the charge toward sustainable development and corporate social responsibility by forming fair and honest partnerships across the globe. We believe in community, we’re excited about change, and we’re guided by bright, talented changemakers who share our vision.

who we are




Philanthropic partnerships

We collaborate with organizations and market partners in the field to deliver training, new technologies, and other services to farmers, workers, and fishermen. These partnerships enable producer groups to build long-term business relationships and strong, sustainable organizations. Ultimately, that benefits entire local communities and brings us closer to our vision.

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