1 December 2014 - African members of WFTO elected a new chair and new members of the board, and renamed their region during their recent regional conference in Arusha, Tanzania, last 12 and 13 November. Rain Morgan of Turqle Trading (South Africa) was elected as the new WFTO Africa Chair, and the region is now called WFTO Africa and the Middle East. Replacing the outgoing board members are Sabine Huester (Kiboko Leisure Wear, Kenya), Mbah Chrispus (Bamenda Handicraft Cooperative Society), Jim Kenyanya (Smolart Self Help, Kenya), and Sara Nakisanze (Easy Afric Designs, Uganda).
The Fair Trade movement officially launched the report “Who’s got the power? Tackling imbalances in agricultural supply chains” last 18 November in the European Parliament during the event hosted by MEP Catherine Stihler (Vice-chair of Internal Market and Consumers Committee of the European Parliament).
During the launching, Fair Trade Advocacy Office Executive Director Sergi Corbalan handed the report to European Union representatives. Invited speakers and the EU representatives debated the findings of the report.
Brussels, 18 November 2014 - Have you ever wondered how come those local apples in season remain more expensive than bananas all year long? Why do poor farmers get poorer just as the international price of their products rise non-stop? Why is environmental damage increasing even as large companies prove they are implementing sustainability programmes? With city dwellers increasing and rural population dwindling, who will produce the food the hungry urbanites will demand?
On March 15th, 2014, unidentified gunmen shot down Romeo Capalla at the age of 65. Romeo was the head of the Panay Fair Trade Center (PFTC) which is the largest Philippine exporter of Fair Trade muscovado sugar, banana chips and ginger chews. Hours after his death the sugar mill of KAMADA cooperative was burned down. To date, a thorough and impartial investigation has not been conducted.
Life in Christchurch, Zew Zealand, is to become a whole lot sweeter with the opening of Trade Aid’s new chocolate factory in August. They will be the world's first Fair Trade Organisation to manufacture 100% Fair Trade organic chocolate. Operating from a newly fitted out commercial factory in Christchurch, Trade Aid, will offer a range of chocolate bars, Easter Eggs and, further down the pipeline, filled chocolates.
The WFTO Guarantee System (GS) is now in full swing since its implementation in May 2013. Currently, thirteen members have gone through the procedure and earned the guaranteed member status. To give us a glimpse of one of our members’ experience with the new system, we asked Association for Craft Producers (ACP) through a questionnaire and feedback form to share their thoughts on the GS.
The City of Milan was introduced to the Italian press as the next World Fair Trade Capital and host of the second World Fair Trade Week on 06 May 2014. The presentation of Milan was part of World Fair Trade Day celebrations. The Mayor of Milan and Italian Fair Trade Organisations joined us in the public presentation of the second World Fair Trade Week, a biennial event initiated by WFTO, which will take place from 23 to 31 May 2015. The first World Fair Trade Week was held in Rio de Janeiro in May 2013.
Amidst the complexity of current verification systems, WFTO introduces a clear system that can be understood and used effectively by small enterprises. The interest of small producers and their organisations was on top of the list when the WFTO Guarantee System (GS) was developed. To give our readers a good grasp how the WFTO system works, we asked our Bolivian member to share their GS experience, particularly on the external verifications part. Below is the story of Ayni Bolivia.
The WFTO Logo is now visible in Fair Trade shops across Germany and Italy following approval of two National Fair Trade Retailers Networks’ compliance with the WFTO Fair Trade Retailer Standard. This spring, AGICES (Italian Fair Trade General Assembly) and Weltladen-Dachverband (German Worldshop Association) started using their respective National Fair Trade Retailers Logos, both carrying the WFTO logo, to brand members’ shops that comply with the requirements.