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Tuesday, 18 January 2011

BAFTS – promoting Fair Trade retailing in Britain


If you are a regular reader of our blog or receive our newsletter you may have noticed that we mention BAFTS as part of our Fair Trade credentials.  As BAFTS are so important to Myakka and our suppliers, we thought it may be useful to explain both who they are and what they do. BAFTS stands for the British Association for Fair Trade Shops and is a network of independent businesses across the UK who:

     ~focus on fair trade retailing in the UK – allowing producers to reach the marketplace on the fairest possible terms

     ~seek to raise the profile of fair trade on the High Street

     ~provide a forum for its members to share ideas and communicate

     ~campaign to promote fair trade and trade justice

BAFTS recognises Importers, Retailers and more recently Self-Sourcing Retailers, which is the category that Myakka now falls into as we import our furniture directly from the manufacturer for retail here in the UK.   All BAFTS members stock must be at least 70% fair trade products and here at Myakka, we also select our UK-based suppliers on their fair trade credentials, ideally sourcing only from BAFTS recognised importers.  Myakka is proud to have been recognised by BAFTS since 2006.

The official BAFTS definition of Fair Trade is:
    “Fair Trade is a trading partnership, based on dialogue, transparency and respect, which seeks

 greater equity in international trade. It contributes to sustainable development by offering better

 trading  conditions to, and securing the rights of, marginalized producers and workers.”

To gain recognition from BAFTS, each member has to complete a full business assessment which is then reviewed annually.  BAFTS make assessments based on the FINE principles of fair trade which include the following:

     ~paying fair prices to producers which reflect the true cost of production

     ~supporting producer organisations in their social and environmental projects

     ~promoting gender equality in pay and working conditions

     ~advising on product development to increase access to markets

     ~committing to long term relationships to provide stability and security

     ~campaigning to highlight the unequal system of world trade which places profit above human rights and threatens our environment.

If you would like to find your local BAFTS registered shop then please visit the BAFTS website by clicking here [link www.bafts.org.uk]. There is also more information on BAFTS as well as links to other useful sites on fair trade.

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