Fair-trade market boosted by consumer demand
An ever-greener and ever-more-caffeinated world is boosting the fair-trade market — not just for coffee, but for products such as cocoa, cotton, tea, pineapples, and flowers. The certification, which holds growers to strict standards per child labor, pesticide use, recycling, and more, is not a phenomenon specific to hippie shops: all Dunkin’ Donuts in the U.S. and all McDonald’s in England sell fair-trade coffee. Starbucks is also a big buyer, while Sam’s Club just converted its private label of ground coffee to fair trade. It’s still a niche market: in 2006, only 3.3 percent of coffee sold in the U.S. was fair trade, and only 27 percent of Americans said they were even aware of the certification. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t celebrate the trend with a glass of fair-trade wine.