PNG, Fiji farmers pioneer region’s Fairtrade certification


<p style="text-align: justify;">Papua New Guinea coffee producers HOAC, Keto Tapasi and Neknasi, all of which are located in the highlands, coastal cocoa growers Huiwani and Adelberts and Fiji’s Labasa Cane Producers’ Association have had their products endorsed by Fairtrade.<!--more--></p>

[caption id="attachment_2064" align="alignright" width="250" caption="PNG farmers prepare their produce for further processing. Photo: Fairtrade Australia &amp; New Zealand."]<a href=""><img class="size-full wp-image-2064" title="Fair trade" src="" alt="" width="250" height="150" /></a>[/caption]
<p style="text-align: justify;">Fairtrade is based on a partnership between producers and consumers, offering producers a better deal (than in conventional trade), improving terms of trade and giving consumers an avenue to reduce poverty through their every day shopping.</p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">The Fairtrade initiative is relatively new in the Pacific Islands region. Fairtrade certified products from the islands were first launched in New Zealand and Australian markets in 2005 and since then sales have grown 400 per cent.</p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">Last year, Pacific Islands Fairtrade products totted up sales of NZ$36.6 million up from just $6 million in the inaugural year. This makes New Zealand and Australia one of the fastest growing Fairtrade markets in the world.</p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">These six Fairtrade certified producers put out a total of 41,600 tonnes of their respective commodities, benefiting some 60,500 producers throughout the Pacific Islands.</p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">Fairtrade NZ’s mandate is to support Pacific producer groups to achieve Fairtrade certification and to promote their competitiveness and access to global Fairtrade markets. The organisation is spreading its reach to cover other producers throughout the region to help find markets for their quality produce for a fair price cutting multiple layers of intervening brokers and speculators.</p>
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