OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA; March 6, 2009 – In an economy that has companies beating a hasty retreat, TransFair USA, the nonprofit behind Fair Trade Certified™ is seeing something that is in short supply. Opportunity.
As more consumers seek out Fair Trade Certified products - Americans spent $1 billion on certified products in 2007 - TransFair USA announced today that it will dramatically expand the list of certified products available in the United States. Effective immediately, TransFair USA will offer Fair Trade Certification on any product certified by Fairtrade Labelling Organizations International.
This means that American consumers can now support struggling farmers worldwide by purchasing a wide array of products, including Fair Trade Certified nuts, oils, vegetables, fruit, sports balls and more.
While best known for its role in transforming the coffee industry, in recent years Fair Trade Certified has grown to encompass more product categories. In particular, tea, sugar, flowers and wine are recent introductions that have established themselves as fixtures in the United States market. With the success of these new offerings, TransFair USA decided the time was right to allow American consumers access to all Fair Trade Certified products.
"Since we launched Fair Trade Certified in the United States 10 years ago, we've taken a cautious approach, focusing on building distribution and consumer interest in each certified product before launching a new one," said Paul Rice, chief executive of TransFair USA. "Now, with public awareness of Fair Trade Certified high, the time is right for us to allow U.S. consumers access to more Fair Trade Certified products and extend the benefits of certification to more farmers.
Fair Trade Certified is a market-based system for sustainable development whereby importers and retailers pay a premium price to farmers and farm workers who commit to grow and produce goods in accordance with rigorous standards that guarantee worker rights, community empowerment and environmental sustainability.
About The New Certified Products
American consumers will now have access to dozens of new Fair Trade Certified products from a variety of new product categories. The new products include:
Dried fruit and vegetables: dried apricots, dried apples, dried bananas, dried dates, dried mangos, dried pineapples, dried raisins and dried tomatoes.
Fresh fruit: apples, avocados, bananas, coconut, grapefruit, grapes, lemons, limes, lychees, mandarins, mangoes, nectarines, oranges, papaya, passion fruit, peaches, pears, pineapples, plantains, plums and soft citrus.
Fresh vegetables: green beans, green pepper, new potatoes, red peppers and yellow peppers.
Fruit juices: apple juice, araza pulp, banana puree, grapefruit juice, guava pulp, lime juice, mandarin juice, mango puree, orange juice, pineapple juice and passion fruit juice.
Grains, nuts and oils: almonds, peanuts, macadamia nuts, cashews, amazonia nuts, sesame seeds, shea butter, apricot seeds, walnuts, olives, olive oil, quinoa, rice, soybeans and pulses.
Spices and herbs: black pepper, white pepper, ginger, nutmeg, mace, turmeric, clove, cardamom, cinnamon, lemon verbena, dill, lemongrass, orange leaves, chamomile, mint, lemon balm, borage, basil, celery, oregano, parsley, rosemary, hibiscus and thyme.
Other: cotton and sports balls.
About TransFair USA
TransFair USA is the only independent, third-party certifier of Fair Trade Certified™ products in the United States. TransFair USA audits and certifies transactions between U.S. companies offering Fair Trade Certified products and their international suppliers to guarantee that the farmers and workers producing Fair Trade Certified goods were paid fair prices and wages.