With sales of fair trade-certified products increasing 15 percent in 2009, according to the global fair trade body Fairtrade Labelling Organizations International (FLO), expect to see many more products hitting the market this year. And even big companies such as chocolate-maker Green and Black's and ice cream powerhouse Ben and Jerry's are transitioning into 100 percent fair trade companies.
Fair trade-certified apparel
Fair trade fabrics, particularly organic cotton, and fair prices for farmers and factory workers help prevent sweatshops. Look for athletic clothing, T-shirts, aprons, and tights.
Because of the economic downturn, customers are heading back to the kitchen—and turning to fair trade for high-quality ingredients such as clove and cinnamon, along with products including gluten-free and organic cake and brownie mixes.
Fair trade Haitian mangoes have tripled the mango farmers’ income since 2004, helping improve the farmers’ quality of life and keep the forest intact.
Fair Trade Spirits is offering a new certification for high-end Fair Trade beverages from South Africa, Chile, and Argentina. Try certified vodka made with fair trade quinoa and organic French wheat or goji-berry liquor made with fair trade-certified sugar.
Soccer and rugby balls from Pakistan debuted nearly two years ago with limited distribution; this year, footballs, basketballs, and volleyballs may be bouncing around, too.
In 2007, butter became the first fair trade-certified personal care product, but more and more now boast the label. The latest: Fair trade-certified sugar scrub. Other personal care ingredients include vanilla, shea butter, olive oil, and tea extracts.
Ecuadorian fair trade flowers are increasing in popularity. Why to buy? They’re environmentally friendly and help support women’s education and empowerment.