As trade, buying and selling, has become a global enterprise, rich and powerful countries and large corporations have benefited at the expense of smaller companies and workers - especially those in poorer countries. 

But companies and governments are increasingly coming under pressure - from consumers, investors, non-governmental organisations and trade unions - to start to reverse this trend. 

The ethical and fair trade movements work toward reducing poverty and exploitation through world trade. Fair and ethical trading means ensuring that:

  • Workers are paid a living wage
  • Working conditions are safe and secure
  • There is no forced labour
  • There is a right to collective bargaining
  • Producers get a fair price for the goods they produce
  • There are opportunities for learning, development and investment
  • Wherever possible goods are produced locally so as to have minimal impacts on the environment.


For more information about fairtrade see the Fairtrade Foundation website.

Updated 23 Feb 2017

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