“A Fair Price for Small Producers”, IUCN promotes Fair Trade in Jordan this weekend

22 September 2005 | News story

Fair Trade Jordan will kick off this Friday, September 23 with over 80 producers showcasing their products at the one-day market place for goods, ideas and shopping at Wild Jordan Nature Center in Jabal Amman. The World Conservation Union’s Regional Office in Jordan is one of the organizers of the event, sponsored by the Enhanced Productivity Program of the Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation.

Producers from all over Jordan will be joined by some from Lebanon, Yemen and Kazakhstan who will offer environmentally friendly products ranging from food, ceramics, glass, shoes, embroidery among the rich variety of goods.

Lebanon will be represented by the highly successful Healthy Basket - a socially responsible business and the first of its kind in the Middle East. Its mission is to support, expand and enhance rural livelihoods in Lebanon through the promotion of organic agriculture. Linking producers with consumers via a community supported agriculture program, sharers purchase a share of the farm's harvest in advance thus assuring a steady income for producers. Since the program began, revenues of the farmers participating in Healthy Basket have increased on average by $2,000 a year with total sales of 200,000 USD in 2004.

Fair Trade is a growing international movement that supports sustainable development and aims to ensure that small producers get a fair deal. This means a fair price for their goods which covers the cost of production and guarantees a living income, secures long-term contracts which provide real security. Fair Trade systems give producers access to the knowledge and skills to improve their products, reach markets, develop their businesses and increase sales.

Considered a force for social and economic change, the fair trade movement globally, is a powerful response to the problems facing commodity producers, and gives consumers an opportunity to use their purchasing power to tilt the balance in favor of the poor. Last year, the total value of fair trade goods sold around the world was over half a billion dollars. At the moment, Jordan is missing out on the benefits of this global trade. Fair Trade Jordan will link to regional fair trade networks in countries like Lebanon, Syria and Egypt. From this base, Fair Trade Jordan will market their products in the global fair trade network.

The event forms part of a series of events organized by the World Conservation Union Regional Office in Jordan, in close collaboration with the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature (RSCN), and the Jordanian Hashemite Fund for Human Development (JOHUD).

For more information, contact Dona Khanfour at: dona.khanfour@iucn.org