In this Issue:

  • 2015 World Fair Trade Week
  • Fair Trade event at the European Parliament
  • Call for applications to join WFTO-E gender working group
  • 2015 Fair Trade Fairs in the spotlight
  • Training on the Guarantee System
  • Vote4FairTrade
  • Member of the month

And More..!

Agenda

11–14 February: BIOFACH

-13-17 February: Ambiente 2015 Fair in Frankfurt, Germany

20 February: World Day of Social Justice

-23 February—8 March: Fairtrade Fortnight UK 2015

-8 March: International Women Day

-24-26 March: Fair Trade Federation Conference

-09-12 April: 2015 Fair Handeln Fair in Germany

-19 April: 2015 Bio Ost Fair in Berlin

-09 May: World Fair Trade Day

-09-24 May : Fair Trade Fortnight 2015 in France

-23-31 May: 2015 World Fair Trade Week

Let us know about your events!

Main Articles

2015 World Fair Trade Week

fair-trade-week-milanDear members,

As you might already know, the 2015 World Fair Trade Week takes place between 23 and 31 May in Milan. It is the most important Fair Trade event of the year and it will be a unique occasion to meet Fair Trade actors from all over the world, exchange experiences and learn from each other.

The WFTO 13th Biennial Conference organized during this week, between 24th and 27th May is a great opportunity for all of you to take part in WFTO strategic decisions, meet other members and create new synergies.  Please bear in mind that the deadline for the WFTO Conference registration is set for 1st of March, or until 30th of April 2015 with a late fee registration. Click here for more information.

The programme of the World Fair Trade Week includes also other events, such as Milano Fair City, the Fair Trade Symposium, Fair Cooking Night or the Fair Trade Fashion Show. For more information please visit http://www.fairtradeweek2015.org/.

Please note that the WFTO-Europe Annual General Meeting (AGM) will take place during the same week, on the 26th of May 2015from 3 to 6 PM. 

Please, answer our short survey and tell us if you are planning to attend the World Fair Trade Week and the WFTO-Europe AGM.

Fair Trade event at the European Parliament

WFTO-Europe attended an event on local and regional support to Fair Trade and its links with the EU trade agenda, organised by European office of the City of Gothenburg in the European Parliament on 27th of January.

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Some of the European decision-makers attended the event. Cecilia Malmström, the new EU Trade Commissioner introduced the Commission´s Fair Trade Agenda and noted that Fair Trade was recently witnessing popularity in the European Parliament and other European institutions. Bernd Lange, member of the European Parliament and Chair of the International Trade Committee expressed European Parliament´s longstanding support to Fair Trade and pointed

out EU efforts to upgrade social and ecological standards. Karin Pleijel, Vice Mayor of the City of Gothenburg, as well as Hans-Christoph Boppel from North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany, explained how cities and regions were supporting Fair Trade and what more they could do in order to raise awareness on FT connected issues.

But the EU has still much more to do for Fair Trade. Sergi Corbalán, Executive Director of the Fair Trade Advocacy Office called on the Commission to regard Fair Trade as a concept rather than a certification and suggested that Cecilia Malmström should become the Fair Trade ambassador during her mandate and take advantage of the European Year of Development in 2015 in order to promote Fair Trade. Cecilia Malmström saw the event as very timely as the Commission is currently defining its priorities on trade for her mandate, keeping in mind that these should include the issues of trade fairness.

Read the FTAO Press release on the topic here.

Call For Applications to join WFTO-E gender Working Group

lobolmo finl 1Interested in improving the situation and position of women within and outside your organization? Then please join the WFTO-E gender working group, an informal group whose general aim is to develop a strategy and action plan at the European level to improve the impact of fair trade on gender equality. Following last year global meeting in Rio, principle number 6 has been revised to include “gender equity and women’s economic empowerment” aspects, while a global gender policy has been agreed. In order to operationalize this strategic move and improve WFTO-E credibility in this area, our group would share existing gender policies / analysis and work toward their implementation / adaptation within a maximum of member organizations. If interested, please contact Oxfam-Magasins du Monde at Sebastien.Maes@mdmoxfam.be

 2015 Fair Trade Fairs in the Spotlight

Many interesting Fair Trade related events will be held in 2015. Have a look at upcoming Fairs organized in February!

BioFach12015 BioFach Organic Food Trade Fair takes place on 11th of February in Nuremberg, Germany. This event is a great opportunity for everyone interested in innovative products and services from the organic sector. Biofach has been a network for customers, suppliers and potential partners for long years – it celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2014! Last year, the event attracted more than 2,263 exhibitors from 76 countries and 42,445 trade visitors from 135 countries.

ambiente_logo_205 (1)Ambiente 2015 Fair will take place on the 13th to 17th of February in Frankfurt, Germany. Many presentations and award ceremonies will be organized during the Fair and issues such as sustainability and creativity will be at the spotlight. WFTO members from Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America will be attending this event. This is an excellent opportunity to meet our members and purchase their Fair Trade products. The WFTO Global stand will be open to the public and will provide information to everyone interested in the Fair Trade, our members and our actions!

Lesson #3: Profile form for existing members

Every two years WFTO members are required to send their Self-Assessment Report (SAR). As part of the Self-Assessment, they also have to provide another form, called ¨Profile form for existing members¨. The aim of the profile form is to identify which type of membership your organisation is entitled to (FTO, FTN or FTSO), which risk category you fall in, as well as to acknowledge any changes that might have occurred within the two years in your organisation (e.g. aim and objectives, trading activity, financial situation etc.).

Below we have collected the most frequently questions asked by members about the profile form. We hope that this can help your experience with the filling of the form.

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News from the Office

WFTO-Europe thanks and says good bye to Hélène Feller and welcomes the new intern Natalia Grotová from Czech Republic.

We are happy to announce that the 2nd year of the Vote4FT Project has successfully passed the audit.

News from the Board

The minutes of the last Board meetings from the 24th of October 2014 and 1st of December 2014 are now available on the  website. Login here in order to Access the Board minutes.

The next meeting will be held on the 23rd of February 2015, via Skype.

Vote4FairTrade: Testimonials

Vote4FT – Sirpa Pietikäinen from Fair Trade Advocacy Office on Vimeo.

The European Parliament Elections are now passed but the Vote4FairTrade campaign goes on.

In the following video MEP Sirpa Pietikäinen speaks about her commitment to Fair Trade,  explains how the European Parliament defends the Fair Trade values and much more.

Member of the Month

BFTF – Belgian Fair Trade Federation

Logo BFTF (fond blanc hte définition)A Belgian Fair Trade platform : stronger together!

The Belgian Fair Trade Federation (BFTF) is a network of fifteen Fair Trade actors in Belgium, mainly active in Wallonia and in Brussels. Some of them are non-governmental, or non-profit organisations with small projects in the South and awareness-raising organisations in the North. Others are small companies which import, transform and/or distribute Fair Trade products. And others are beautiful shops specialised in Fair Trade and organic products. Some of these actors sell food or non-food products exclusively, others have both.

In one word BFTF members all practice different activities. They also all have one common goal: promoting Fair Trade in Belgium. In 2010 this goal led them to gather around one common project: the creation of a platform, BFTF.

Various activities to improve awareness of Fair Trade

BFTF was founded to promote Fair Trade in Belgium but also to give the opportunity to its members to gather and to empower their activities. Over the years BFTF has thus become the interlocutor representing the sector in Belgium. Today we have many different activities going from services to our members to awareness-raising of Belgian citizens.

Trainings are organised for our members. We also organise gatherings to simply bring together our members and to foster exchanges about their different practices. image smallerSometimes these gatherings lead to common projects. Last year, for instance, all together we made a small leaflet to illustrate Fair Trade’s qualities, diversity and values. This leaflet was handed out to over 10.000 persons. Through this action, we expected to raise awareness and to invite people to consider the possibility of consuming differently and respectfully for the producers and the environment.

This project leads us to the second part of activity: the promotion of Fair Trade to Belgian citizens through different means: information, communication, awareness-raising… We invite citizens to more awareness about unfair practices and to act and go for Fair Trade.

New Challenges for 2015

Founded in 2009, we will celebrate our fifth anniversary in October. A good moment to launch new challenges. Furthermore, Fair Trade has evolved these last years. In fact we see more and more European fair initiatives. Nowadays, in our countries, as in every other, producers are victims of the existing agricultural model. They also need to be given a fair price for their work and their products. Therefore, in 2015, BFTF will open itself to new members, called the “local fair trade actors”.

As new member of WFTO, we hope we’ll have the opportunity to meet you, to get to know your activity and to imagine possible future collaboration with you!

Name: Belgian Fair Trade Federation
Head Office: Brussels, Belgium
Year of foundation: 2010
Website: www.bftf.be

FT-RELATED NEWS, PUBLICATIONS AND OTHER TOOLS

  • The FTAO’s Internal Advocacy Bulletin for January 2015 (login required) includes articles regarding policy issues (EU Trade Commissioner reveals plans for Fair Trade, Sustainable textile initiative discussed at EU level, Latest updates on Post-2015 development agenda), FTAO news (World Fair Trade Organization-Global comes back to the FTAO) and more!
  • Clean Clothes Campaign report shows that there is a decline towards illegal work and low pay level in the Italian garment industry.
  • Sasha and CRC Exports, two WFTO members from India successfully completed the Guarantee System Process and can now use the WFTO Product Label! You can read more about them here.
  • The World Economic Forum annual meeting took place in Switzerland on 21st of January. During the BBC debate, Oxfam International’s Executive Director Winnie Byanyima called for urgent action to tackle rising inequality and climate change.
  •  Oxfam published a report on inequality and global wealth distribution. It provides further evidence that we must build a fairer economic and political system that values every citizen.

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This publication has been produced with the assistance of the European Union. The contents of this publication are the sole responsibility of WFTO-Europe and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union.

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