How much do folk in the Western world know about Fairtrade?

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Fairtrade fortnight started yesterday and there are various  activities up  and down the country here in the UK.

I have posed the question, HOW FAIR IS FAIRTRADE on a few online forums and got three responses.

Of the three responses, two felt that Fairtrade  is not as fair as it could be. The other felt Fairtrade is not fair but goes someway to bringing about change for framers in the developing world.

By the end of yesterday I had another question based on the level of response I got.


Then I came across this article today

The article in part appears to provide an answer to my question. people here in the UK do not know much about Fairtrade seemingly because the government has not done enough to publicise it,both by way of benefit to the environment as well as a means to sustainable and dignified ways of poverty.

This doesn’t come as a surprise to me. This is because in  November 2007 I attended an event that was looking at encouraging outward investment into African countries and happened to sit next to a guy from the Fair Trade organisation. I asked him how the female producers at Ethnic Supplies could go about registering with Fair Trade. He looked me in the eye and told me that Textile and handicrafts are not included.

My question therefore is if the Fairtrade foundation does not recognise textile or handmade fashion accessories, how can the public change it’s buying habits?

In other words how can fairly traded  fashion be perceived as cool and fashionable if the powers that be do not advocate for it?

I would like to hear from anyone who has views on this matter?

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