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New Book Published on Fair Trade Movement from UK Perspective

The Fair Trade Revolution

Edited by John Bowes, 2011 ~ 257 pg. book ~ high school level & above ~ $20

FTRN says: “Several pioneers of the UK Fairtrade movement contribute chapters on what Fairtrade certification has done for, and gotten from, producers and consumers, while a Nicaraguan coffee farmer and U.S. pioneer add non-UK perspectives. However, the most urgent chapters explore the future: whether reformers and transformers can forge a collaborative movement; whether Fairtrade can advance food security and address climate change; how Fairtrade can scale up but not compromise its values; how retailers, corporations and pioneers can again play different roles in strengthening Fairtrade.”

Summary/review: 14 authors contribute chapters on Fairtrade certification (by FLO), currently the dominant third-party recognition of Fair Trade: its history, its impacts, stories of some key UK companies and producer organizations, evolution of Fair Trade Towns, and the challenges and opportunities for the broader movement.

Buy the book from Macmillan

See other books on Fair Trade recommended by FTRN


  1. John

    ‘The Fair Trade Revolution’ has contributions from Rosenthall (USA), Kroezen (Netherlands), Mathew (India), Haslam (Nicaragua), Hoskyns (NIcaragua) as well as from UK ‘pioneers’. It explains the growth of Fair Trade but also, critically, focuses on some of the key challenges ahead. In particular, it the describes the USA as ‘the toughest nut to crack’. Although the absolute volume of Fair Trade consumption is as high in the Unites States as it is in the UK, per capta consumption is dramtically lower. ‘It has been argued’ says Bowes, ‘that the relative weakness of fair trade in the United States reflects its culture of self-centred political and emotional isolationism, together with a virtually undeviating commitment to the capitalist market economy, which has, historically, driven the single-minded pursuit of personal material wealth at the expense of an empathetically motivated response to global economic and social problems. If this is true then it represents a major obstacle for fair trade in the future. Success in the largest consumer market on Earth has to be a prerequisite for any fundamental and sustained change in global trading practices.’
    The book is aimed at activists and intelligent readers seeking to engage with Fair Trade for the first time. It seeks to inform, influence and inspire.

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