Fairtrade Canada will not introduce FSP label

Fairtrade International (FLO) recently proposed the development of a Fairtrade Sourcing Partnership (FSP), which would see the introduction of a new Fairtrade label applicable to products with 100 percent Fairtrade certified sugar or cocoa.

All that can be

Currently, for a product to bear the familiar Fairtrade Mark, FLO standards require that all ingredients that can be certified must be, and that a minimum of 20 percent of the total product be comprised of Fairtrade certified ingredients.

The FSP would shift from this policy, using a new logo to certify products containing only one of either sugar or cocoa being certified--even if this made up less than 20 percent of the total product.

FSP in Canada

Fairtrade Canada announced it will not introduce the new label for cocoa, sugar, or cotton into the Canadian Marketplace.

In a recent communication, Fairtrade Canada states, "We recognize that there are multiple certification schemes in North America and our main priority continues to be to build the reputation and the recognition of the existing International FAIRTRADE Mark, before considering a new label such as the one proposed for FSP."

The organization also says it will consider an off-pack method for companies to show their commitment in sourcing Fairtrade certified sugar, cocoa, and cotton while working towards the existing "all than can be" requirement.

Fairtrade International

The FLO Board met last week to determine if the FSP program would be approved for implementation in January 2014. Their decision will be presented later this week.

Fairtrade Canada has expressed that they are committed to their stated approach, and that FLO will also respect the decisions of its respective labelling initiatives whether or not they decide to engage in the FSP program.

The CFTN submitted its position of non-support for the FSP program in early October, expressing concern that the introduction of an additonal program mark would lack the same high standards for certification as existing Fairtrade certified products. The CFTN also expressed concern that the addition of a new program mark would contribute to the growing issue of label confusion among consumers.


UPDATE: Fairtrade International has approved the new Fairtrade Sourcing Programs for cocoa, sugar, and cotton.