Fair Trade Towns
The Fair Trade Towns campaign is an exciting initiative that recognizes communities that actively support Fair Trade, increasing both availability and awareness at the local level.
Why become a Fair Trade Town?
- To distinguish your community as a leader and to confirm your commitment to supporting the principles of fair trade, including a fair price, respect for labour standards, environmental sustainability, and more direct and equitable trade
- To improve the livelihoods of the millions of farmers and workers in the developing world who benefit from fair trade
- To create awareness and encourage local citizens to make ethical and sustainable choices
- To unite your community in a common cause
- To have fun and be creative
To become a Fair Trade Town, your community must achieve the following 6 goals....
- Political Support: The local council uses Fairtrade certified products and supports the Fair Trade Towns campaign
- Availability of Products: Stores & restaurants serve Fairtrade certified products
- Community Support: Workplaces, faith groups, & schools use and promote Fairtrade certified products
- Public Education: Public awareness events and media coverage held on Fairtrade and the campaign
- Fair Trade Town Committee: A steering group created for continued commitment
- Keep the Momentum: Other ethical and sustainable initiatives promoted within the community
A little history
The idea of a "Fair Trade Town" was born in England in 1999, when an Oxfam group in the town of Garstang wanted to promote fair trade as part of a community effort.
The campaign aimed to make Garstang the world's first Fair Trade Town and this goal soon attracted the interest of others throughout the community including private citizens, local businesses, and the town council.
All of the excitement surrounding the campaign soon captured the attention of local and regional media and before long Garstang became a famous landmark and an international campaign was born.
Many towns have followed the Garstang.'s example There are now more than 630 Fair Trade Towns in 18 countries!
Here and Now
In Canada, the movement is still young. The first city to be awarded Fair Trade Town status was Wolfville, Nova Scotia, on April 17, 2007. Since then, additional cities such as La Peche, Quebec, Gimli, Manitoba and Golden, British Columbia have joined in, allowing Fair Trade Towns to stretch from coast to coast. New Fair Trade Towns will be announced in the coming months.
Fair Trade Towns in Canada:
- Wolfville, NS (April 17, 2007)
- La Pêche, QC (November 9, 2007)
- Port Colborne, ON (April 28, 2009)
- Nakusp, BC (April 29, 2009)
- Golden, BC (June 8, 2009)
- Gimli, MB (July 1, 2009)
- Olds, AB (November 9, 2009)
- Revelstoke, BC (December 8, 2009)
- Neuville, QC (March 31, 2010)
- Mercier-Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, QC (April 19, 2010)
- Vancouver, BC (May 6, 2010)
- Barrie, ON (May 10, 2010)
- Sainte Anne de Bellevue, QC (May 21, 2010)
- Canmore, AB (July 6, 2010)
- Sherbrooke, QC (February 9, 2011)
- Toronto, ON (May 10, 2013)
- Edmonton, AB (September 26, 2013)
Active Fair Trade Towns campaigns can be found in...
(As not all local campaigns are listed, please contact the Communications Department at Fairtrade Canada to find out if there is a Fair Trade Town campaign in your region or to register a new campaign)
We invite you to join the movement by supporting the campaign already underway in your town or by starting one yourself.
To get started, have a look at our Fair Trade Towns Action Guide for all the details on how to become a Fair Trade Town.