Fairtrade & Climate Change

The year 2020 is set to become one of the hottest in recorded history. Climate change is a global issue that has disproportionately impacted millions of farmers daily.


Farming families are increasingly concerned about the future of food production, as the environmental impacts of climate change will intensify in the coming years. Therefore, it is essential to give a platform to elevate the voices of marginalised farmers and workers whose livelihoods are being threatened.


The Fairtrade approach to climate change focuses on making farmers adaptable and resilient by implementing sustainable supply chains that will ensure their wellbeing and food security.


The Climate Crisis

According to Fairtrade International, approximately 80 per cent of the world’s food comes from 500 million small-scale farmers. Therefore, global food security directly depends on their environmental and economic stability. For farmers to fight against climate change, targeted improvements on ecological water management, controlling pests and diseases, preventing soil erosion, reforestation and diversification are fundamental.


Environmental Standards

The Fairtrade environmental Standards focus on applying strategies that prevent and mitigate the impact of agriculture on the planet. The Standard enforces sustainable agricultural methods including water and soil quality, the promotion of eco-friendly cultivation and the ban of harmful pesticides and GMO seeds. These practices will ensure the long-term adaptation of farmers against environmental challenges. Fairtrade incentivises investment into projects tackling climate change and reducing carbon footprint with increases in the Premium and Minimum Price.


Fairtrade Premium

The Fairtrade Premium is an additional sum of money that allows farmers and workers to invest in projects of their choice aiming at strengthening their businesses and livelihoods. This initiative provides farmers with the opportunity to protect themselves against climate emergencies by investing in long-term sustainable practices.


Fairtrade Carbon Credits

The Fairtrade Climate Standard was developed in partnership with the Gold Standard Foundation. The project provides support to rural communities to benefit from Fairtrade Carbon Credits and better contribute to climate mitigation and adaptation methods. Fairtrade communities can engage in carbon projects such as sustainable forest management to gain carbon credits.


Climate change is a complex issue that disproportionately changes the daily reality of farmers and workers in the Global South. Fairtrade helps these communities implement adaptation and mitigation methods and standards that contribute to the long-term resilience of workers on a local and global scale.

For more information about Fairtrade Standards: