Oakland, CA—Fair trade products certifier Fair Trade USA has made some significant changes to its policies. These changes, part of the Fair Trade USA’s Multiple Ingredients Product Policy, were made after a two-month evaluation with several stakeholders.

States Jenna Larson of Fair Trade USA, “What we have done with revision of the Ingredients Policy is changed, strengthened and clarified the requirements for the usage of both the full label and the ingredients label.” The new Ingredients Policy stipulates that a grocery or personal care items may use the Fair Trade Certified label if it contains 100% fair trade certified ingredients.

This label, currently used on 10,000+ products, is getting a facelift with an updated look. While the old black-and-white label was sufficient, the new design integrates some green and is said to pop better on store shelves. The organization is encouraging manufacturers to switch over to the new label before October 2012. “The redesign also better communicates, visually, the benefits of Fair Trade, and makes it easier for consumers to find the product on the shelf. The label is now also globally-registered,” says Larson.

Fair Trade USA also updated a label and requirements for products that mix Fair Trade Certified ingredients with ingredients that do not yet have Fair Trade standards. Such items include eggs, wheat and dairy. Companies may use the new Fair Trade Certified Ingredients label if finished products contain 20% or more fair trade ingredients. Any ingredient that has a fair trade certified option available must be used, and products must include 100% of ingredients that are commonly associated with the product. For instance, a chocolate bar must contain fair trade certified cocoa.

From Left, the two new logos for Fair Trade Certified Ingredients and for Fair Trade Certified and the old logo for Fair Trade Certified.


Published in WholeFoods Magazine March 2012 (online 1/20/12)