Public interest increasing in fair trade SMEs

Although it is still hard for small retailers selling fair trade and organic produce, public interest is increasing and the number of success stories is growing, according to a fair trade business expert.

The British Association for Fair Trade Shops (BAFTS) says that SMEs do not have the financial power of larger retailers, which are able to buy ethically sourced products in bulk to keep their costs down.

However, a spokesperson for BAFTS states that many smaller retailers are able to offer the ethical consumer more products than supermarkets.

‘It is definitely still hard to be an independent retailer in this landscape, but the increased public awareness about fair trade has meant that fair trade retailing is not quite the niche market that it used to be,’ she says.

According to, the Fairtrade Mark is an independent consumer label which appears on products as a guarantee that disadvantaged producers in the developing world are getting a better deal.

Related: Small firms can reap fair trade reward

Alan Dobie

Alan Dobie

Alan was assistant editor at Vitesse Media Plc (previous owner of before moving on to a content producer role at Reed Business Information. He has over 17 years of experience in the...

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