Can Fairtrade bring benefits that really address the challenges of the 21st century — food security, population growth, climate change, women’s empowerment and high commodity prices?
As a Fairtrade pioneer with over 30 years’ experience we believe it can!
Whilst women’s empowerment does figure in the Fairtrade standards, we want to go further and challenge mainstream Fairtrade to show that the bar can be raised and women can have the same access to choices as men.
Smallholders, not estates, produce most of the world’s coffee and some of the best too! Yet despite women doing most of the work on the farm they often have little influence.
Evidence shows that where women control household income the family’s health, nutrition and education improves at a faster rate because less money is spent outside the household.
Coffee grown by women
“During the coffee harvest, we women work really hard. We have to pick, carry, pulp, ferment, sort, wash and dry the coffee. All women work from dawn until dusk without resting. Despite all this hard work we love our jobs and the benefits they bring.
Because of Coffee Grown by Women, I am able to send my children to school and my husband and I discuss what the family needs and decide on what to spend money on together. I am a Board member of Gumutindo Co-operative and this responsibility means a lot to me. I have grown in confidence and I am proud to represent the co-operative and my community.
We are spending the extra women’s premium on our centre to help orphans as we have many orphans to look after. Helping the village in this way is an extension of my own happiness as a woman farmer”. Justine Watulunga, coffee producer from Uganda
Learn more about women in Fair trade: Making the invisible visible.