The fair trade movement began in the late 1950’s in response to the desire of socially-concious Northern consumers to support the development of Southern farmers and workers. These consumers understood that conventional global trade was driving unequal trading relationship and exploitative working conditions. By the 90s, the various fair and ethial trade initiatives had largely been consolidated under the Fairtrade International (FLO) which developed tools to assess and monitor the production and marketing chain and to ensure that producers were paid a "fair price" for their produce and that benefits went directly to the producers.

EMG has been involved in the governance of fair trade in South Africa and the region since the first South African producers were accredited. EMG staff member Mandy Moussouris is an active member of the board of Fair Trade South Africa and sits on the FLO Workers Rights Advisory Committee. Noel Oettle serves on the FLO International Board and the board of Fair Trade Africa.

Fair Trade - Resources

Farm worker training manual (1.2MB) This manual was developed as part of our ongoing work to offer training and skills development for small scale farmers and farm workers. This training manual covers issues of the how the economy works, the role of trade in the economy... and will help farm workers get a better understanding of how that fit into the wider agricultural economy. Ook in Afrikaans beskikbaar

A Practical Guide to Fair Trade Premium Projects for Small Farmers and Joint Bodies is a joint publication (together with Fair Trade South Africa and the City of Cape Town). It is aimed at FLO certified small-farmers and farm-worker Joint Bodies, and explores the processes and rules around managing and spending FLO premium funds. It is written in a simple, eary-to-read style and gives a large number of real life examples.

Ook in Afrikaans beskikbaar!

A beginners guide to alternative trade and fair trade in South Africa (104KB PDF) is a combined English/Afrikaans version. The booklet provides an overview of the basic issues relating to fair trade in South Africa.

The Association for Fairness in Trade (AFIT) produces a regular Newsletter