The following article is from our friends at Fair World Project:
Can you tell which of these “fair trade” coffees was grown on an estate? And does it matter?
You may have heard that coffee carrying a fair trade label was grown by small-scale producers. Last year, for the first time, Fair Trade USA (FTUSA) allowed a fair trade label to be placed on coffee grown on large-scale coffee “estates,” in this case a 500- acre farm with 110 workers in Brazil. The logic promoted by Fair Trade USA is that workers often face unsafe working conditions and low wages. In one example of the way this argument is conveyed, a father works as part of a fair trade co-op, but there is not enough land available for his son then needs to work on a large farm as a farmworker. “Shouldn’t the son also benefit from fair trade?” asks FTUSA.