The Co-operative Difference
Fair Trader puts its values into practice by following the Co-operative Principles:
1. Anyone who shares our belief that we can make a meaningful, personal contribution to building a better world by supporting the development of fair trade, is welcome to join.
2. Members' input to the development of the business is actively sought and every member has an equal say on major decisions via online voting. The voluntary unpaid Board is re-appointed annually by the members.
3. We are funded entirely by member subscriptions and members get dividend points with every purchase. Any financial surpluses are reinvested to help our fair trade suppliers sell more of their products.
4. Apart from our manager and a part-time assistant we are run entirely by committed volunteers. We have no borrowings and are not beholden to any other organisation.
5. Members organise regular events (see blogs) that provide an opportunity to learn from, and co-operate with, our suppliers and other stakeholders. This learning helps us develop ourselves and work more effectively together.
6. We partner with other co-operatives to develop online sales of our fairly traded gifts to help our co-operative supplier member communities in the developing world.
7. Fair Trader members undertake a seven-point sustainability assessment on every product/supplier we offer to ensure that they provide sustainable development in environmental, social and economic terms.