This is a tough page to put together. I started by listing every Fairtrade product I could find which took ages, looked dull and was as repetitive as Roland Emmerich’s next disaster movie. You want to know every brand of Fair Trade chocolate and every variation each brand makes? Here’s a summary for you: lots.
Actually, a summary is probably the best thing given there are more than 3,000 Fairtrade products from a ton of the least developed countries. So we have: Fairtrade tea, coffee, hot chocolate, fruit juice, smoothies, wine, spirits and beer. We have Fairtrade biscuits, shortbread, nuts, fudge, boiled sweets, cereal, cereal bars, Bombay mix, fruit, dried fruit, vegetables, yoghurt and chocolate. And we’re not just talking yer everyday bars of chocolate, we’re talking Fairtrade Easter eggs, advent calendars, chocolate coins, After Eight knock-offs, selection boxes and such and such. We have sugar, rice, pasta, quinoa, herbs, spices, olive oil, beans, apple sauce, cranberry sauce, jam, marmalade, honey, peanut butter and chocolate spread. And we have Fairtrade cakes, cake bars, mini rolls, flapjacks, brownies, ice cream, and various other fat-ass treats.
Then there’s the Fairtrade stuff that shouldn’t be ingested that deserve a summary of their own: Don’t eat Fairtrade shirts, T-shirts, jumpers, socks, pants, shoes, jewellery or accessories. Avoid drinking Fairtrade footballs, rugby balls or volleyballs. And be warned Fairtrade stationary, jewellery, flowers, home furnishings, beauty products and toiletries are not for internal use.
Good old summaries. They do the job, don’t they? That’s us informed of the range of Fair Trade goods out there, all certified by the Fairtrade Foundation, and in a clear, concise way.
Onto the next reason for this being a tough page to put together: suppliers. I’m so obsessed with objectivity I don’t want to endorse any companies but it’s fairly pointless bigging up all these Fair Trade products (in a useful, concise summary) without telling you how to find the things. So let’s be clear: I’m listing these companies, not endorsing them. I’ve not used many of them myself so I can’t say how good they are but you need to make some decisions yourself, dammit. I’m cutting the apron strings! It’d still be nice to see you every so often, obviously. But don’t just come back when you need some washing done, it’s obvious and hurtful.
Most supermarkets now flog Fairtrade stuff, as do many charity shops. And charity shops are a good choice; buying from Oxfam would be a double hit for ethicality. (I’m disappointed to find ‘ethicality’ is actually a word; I was trying to be silly.) If you buy from a charity shop you’ll be splitting profits between a charity, a Fair Trade company and the people who work for it. So that’d make it a triple hit. A triple hit for ethicalism. (‘Ethicalism’ isn’t a real word; I’m just being silly.)
Other high streeters include Holland and Barrett, random newsagents stocking Fair Trade chocolate and juices alongside the evil kind, and devoted independent Fair Trade shops. Marks and Spencer coffee shops use Fair Trade coffee beans, and Pret a Manger, Starbucks and Costa Coffee have Fair Trade coffees available.
If you have Internet access (a pointless start to the sentence given you’re reading this website) you can order a wider range of items from the sites listed below. There are plenty more retailers out there, but as most of these are linked from the Fairtrade Foundation’s website we can assume they’re goodies.
The British Association for Fair Trade Shops’ website is a useful resource and a challenge for accurate apostrophe placement. Still, you can find Fairtrade shops in your home town, go to those Fairtrade shops and once there buy Fairtrade products. You can see why I mentioned it here.
Traidcraft produces and sells its own Fair Trade goods with a range that includes tea, coffee, wine, chocolate, snacks, clothes, stationery, jewellery, toys and household items. You can even buy toilet roll. A slight disadvantage is that you often have to buy in bulk, meaning the previous sentence should have read: You can even buy 40 toilet rolls. A slightly less slight disadvantage is that some products are not Fairtrade, such as toilet roll, which is produced in the UK. Honestly, if there was any degree of competence here this whole paragraph would be rewritten.
Here be another site with a hefty range of products but in easier to digest amounts; digesting 40 toilet rolls took a lot of work and, ironically, a lot of toilet roll afterwards. Again, not everything they sell is Fairtrade so you’ll have to head to the Fairtrade section where you’ll be dazzled by the choice of pasta and tea and such and such.
Simply Fair is the third Fairtrade site I’ve seen today claiming to have the widest selection available; someone here is lying about the actual width of their available selection. Alongside the usual Fairtrade stuff it also sells recycled stationery so you can kill two ethical birds with one stone. Although killing even one ethical bird would be considered unethical by most vegetarians. Shame on you.
Ethical Superstore has been running for years and flogs ethical products rather than Fairtrade stuff exclusively, recycling and organicising anything it can get its hands on. Pick and choose and you’ll do fine.
No food here, tubbs. The Fair Corportation specialises in footballs, basketballs, volleyballs and shoes. And the shoes are vegan so there’s another ethical box ticked.
And that should do you. Whether you’re shopping online or in real life there are thousands of products, tons of suppliers and no excuses left for not buying this stuff. Get on it.