Okay, so you may have heard about BAFTS, but what exactly is the British Association for Fair Trade Shops?

Put simply, it`s a group of retailers, importers and wholesalers who, although independent, unite in a core purpose which is to bring about fundamental changes in the status of working producers through Fair Trade retailing, trading and campaigning and to contribute towards the building of greater trade justice and equity in the world.

BAFTS is a registered company, based in Oxford, England and has an elected Board of 5 Directors.

It is connected to the global Fair Trade Movement through its membership of the WFTO (the World Fair Trade Association) and the Trade Justice Movement. It recognizes this internationally agreed definition of Fair Trade:-

“Fair Trade is a trading partnership, based on dialogue, transparency and respect, that seeks greater equity in international trade. It contributes to sustainable development by offering better trading conditions to, and securing the rights of, marginalized producers and workers – especially in the South.”

All involved in Fair Trade accept that it has to include:-
– Paying fair prices to producers which reflect the true cost of production.
– Supporting producer organisations in their social and environmental projects.
– Promoting gender equality in pay and working conditions.
– Advising on product development to increase access to markets.
– Committing to long term relationships to provide stability and security.
– Campaigning to highlight the unequal system of world trade which places profit above human rights and threatens our environment.

BAFTS recognises the following sources as Fair Trade:-
– Fairtrade marked products.
– Members of the International Fair Trade Association (WFTO).
– Recognised importers and wholesalers.

Many of the products stocked by THE FAIR TRADE STORE come from BAFTS registered wholesalers and importers.
One such source is Just Trade, who were set up as a family-run business in 2006. They work hand in hand with small, Fair Trade projects primarily in the shanty towns of Lima, Peru, acting as mentor, educator, wholesaler and retailer, helping people in these marginalised communities develop their existing skills to design and make saleable products and we provide them with a long term route to market in the UK.
THE FAIR TRADE STORE has been trading with Just Trade for a couple of years now and are particularly proud of products such as this natural Huayruro seed bracelet, in Red, made by artisans of the Zoe Project in Lima.

You can buy from us with confidence, knowing that “together, we are helping to make a difference”.

If you have any questions about BAFTS, or the issues raised in this Blog post, please leave a comment below and I will get straight back to you – Paul.