Not only does Fairtrade ensure that the people in every stage of the production and trade process are treated ethically, but it is also committed to protecting the environment.
Farmers describe climate change as one of the biggest threats they face. Fairtrade certified sites must comply with strict environmental standards to protect the precious ecosystems in which they reside. These standards apply to the improvement of soil and water quality, pest management, the avoidance of harmful chemicals, waste management, the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, and the protection of biodiversity. To keep their certification, sites are regularly visited by consultants to make sure standards are being upheld.
Fairtrade doesn’t only help protect the environment, it also helps restore it. Many farmer-run cooperatives decide to invest their Fairtrade Premiums in reforestation. Cultivating new growth on degraded, cleared land, helps rejuvenate the soil and cleanses the air of carbon dioxide. Trees also harbor biodiversity, prevent soil erosion, and reduce the effects of climate change. Fairtrade also encourages farmers to grow trees and crops together. The decomposition of the leaves that fall from the trees make the soil more fertile, ensuring crops that thrive.
If you are consuming products cultivated in warm climates like coffee, teas, and some produce, it is of the utmost importance to make sure to look for a Fairtrade label. It is easier to enjoy a cup of coffee knowing your beverage choices aren’t putting the environment at stake.