New campaign unveiled on World Fair Trade Day on 11 May

Fairtrade Make Your Mark campaign

Fairtrade has launched a worldwide campaign to raise awareness of the lack of power and influence in global supply chains that keeps farmers and workers in low-income countries poor despite playing a critical role in global food security.

Launched on World Fair Trade Day on 11 May, The Make Your Mark campaign will run across 10 markets. It aims to highlight the power imbalance farmers face, which is exacerbated by the climate crisis.

Fairtrade is asking supporters to sign up to a fairer future by committing to three pledges by 11 June this year. The three ways to Make Your Mark with Fairtrade include: Choose Fairtrade, Spread the Word, and Vote Fair.

“Farmers’ voices across Latin America, Asia, and Africa are consistently ignored or marginalised by powerful business interests in the north – a legacy of the colonial era and slave trade,” Fairtrade Foundation said. “We can all make a difference if we demand change.”

The campaign will include specially commissioned films featuring hero Fairtrade farmers show consumers how their choices – buying Fairtrade bananas, coffee or cotton – can change the lives and futures of farmers, workers and their communities. They are produced in collaboration with Fairtrade’s producer networks CLAC, NAPP and Fairtrade Africa and tell the stories of three ‘hero’ farmers

Stefan Donnelly, The Fairtrade Foundation’s senior campaigns manager, said: “Farmers are telling us climate change, unfair trade and lack of representation in decision-making forums is making life impossible: poverty forces families to choose between essentials like medical care, children’s education and decent food.

“Denied fair pay and a fair say, millions of farmers will walk away from farming – worsening further the global crisis of food insecurity. We can demand change. Choosing Fairtrade products shows that we respect the people behind our food.

“The more people buy Fairtrade goods, be it coffee, chocolate, bananas, wine, cotton, or any of the other thousands of products available in the UK where you see the distinctive mark, the more power it gives the farmers.”

Fairtrade Minimum Price creates a safety net and stable income for producers. Otherwise, they struggle to afford food, schooling for their children and adequate housing and healthcare. Fairtrade Premium, an additional payment for farmers, provides funds for training in soil improvement, disease prevention and biodiversity to mitigate climate change, and invest in farms so they can continue as going concerns.

Colombian banana farmer Louis Caldo Verduga warned that climate change, causing unpredictable weather patterns, is making it much harder to farm. “It used to be colder and now it’s much hotter. Bit by bit it has continued to become hotter,” he said.

“This could mean the end of the banana. There won’t be water to irrigate them quickly, as it will take several months before the rain fall.” The hot sun dries the wells, pests and diseases spread more easily and the plants are smaller and thinner.”