Fairtrade India, a new outpost of Fairtrade International (FLO), officially launched last week with a stated goal to promote Indian-produced Fairtrade-certified products, including coffee and tea, directly to the growing Indian market.
“This is an exciting opportunity for India to demonstrate that it can actually lead on ethical consumption and show its support for our small farmers,” Abhishek Jani, the first CEO of Fairtrade India said in an announcement. “Buying Fairtrade is an immediate way for us to directly support the poorest farmers, and the environment.” A technology company executive, Abhishek Jani also has extensive experience with New Delhi-based fair trade organization Navdanya.
Fairtrade India joins Fairtrade South Africa and Fairtrade Eastern Africa (based in Kenya) as independent wings of FLO that are licensed to use the Fairtrade mark, and which have their own marketing initiatives. These new organizations represent “a moving beyond the south-north trade model,” FLO said in its introduction of Fairtrade India.
FLO says there are approximately 121,400 farmers representing 72 Fairtrade-certified producer organizations currently working working in India, largely in the coffee, spices, tea, coffee and nuts segments. The USDA estimates that India will produce 5.1 million bags of coffee this year, down slightly from record-high output last year.