What is fair trade fashion?
You have probably heard of "fair trade". But what does fair trade exactly mean? Previously, you only found fair trade products in the world shop, but fortunately, more and more products are now fair trade. Including clothes! But why would you choose fair trade clothing?
What is fair trade?
If something is labelled as fair trade, it means that employees and producers receive a fair price for the product or their work. The fair trade organization protects these people. This is very important because due to competition or other causes the price of products can drop very low. So low that you can barely live on it and work under deplorable conditions. In the production of fair trade products, it is checked whether the working conditions are safe and clean, that no child labour and slavery take place and that the employees have the right to start a trade union. This sounds obvious to us, but unfortunately, that is not the case in many parts of the world.
In addition, it is often the case that with a fair trade product you conclude a contract for a longer period with the producers and with some fair trade organizations an extra amount is returned to the local communities, which is invested, for example, in better hospitals and schools.
Why choose fair trade clothing?
Tip: have you seen the documentary The True Cost? No, do that first before you read on. Yes? Then you probably already have an idea why it is so important to buy fair trade clothing. Because it is unwise that many people worldwide are being exploited to produce clothes as cheaply as possible. A lot of clothing brands are only selling more and more and they do not care about the way they generate more sales. Many clothing brands do not know exactly how things go in the factories (or do not want to know).
Fair trade clothing
Brands that produce fair trade clothing fortunately do know that. There are several smaller clothing brands that maintain good relations with the factories where the clothing is produced, so they can be sure of fair production. At MaeSue.com, the brands Yunit, Bloi, Näz, Thinking Mu and Ultra Tee worked together with factories and producers working according to the fair trade principles. You can read per brand how they work exactly.
Other brands work together with fair trade labels, which regularly check the factories.
The Fairtrade label
Besides the general name "fair trade" there are also clothing brands that have an official Fairtrade label. The best-known label is the Fairtrade International label. Fairtrade is an international label for fair trade. The label was established in 1988 under the name 'Max Havelaar'. FairTrade stands for good working conditions but also has some ecological requirements. The entrepreneur or employee receives a minimum price for the products and the work and a premium.
The FairTrade label is a non-profit organization with 23 small fair-trade member organizations. FairTrade is also checked, which is carried out by the control body, FLO-CERT. Read more on fairtradewinds.net.
Fair Wear Foundation
The Fair Wear Foundation is not a label but an organization that is committed to honestly produced fashion. It is a non-profit organization that works together with brands, factories, trade unions, NGOs and sometimes governments to monitor and improve the working conditions of garment workers in eleven production countries in Asia, Europe and Africa.
FWF keeps track of what improvements have been made by the companies with which it works. And by sharing expertise, social dialogue and strengthening industrial relations, FWF increases the effectiveness of companies' efforts. Read more at fairwearfoundation.org.
Source images: Know The Origin