Fairtrade Standard for Flowers and Plants - Limited Review 2014

Introduction

 

Welcome to the consultation on the Fairtrade Standard for Flowers and Plants!
Thank you for taking the time to participate. First you will find an introduction to the topic and consultation process and then you will be asked the consultation questions. The whole process should take you around 20 minutes.


1. General Introduction

Fairtrade Standards support the sustainable development of small-scale farmers and workers in the Global South. Producers and traders must meet applicable Fairtrade Standards for their products to be certified as Fairtrade. Within Fairtrade International, the Standards & Pricing Unit (S&P) is responsible for developing Fairtrade Standards. The procedure followed, as outlined in the Standard Operating Procedure for the Development of Fairtrade Standards, is designed by Fairtrade and compliant with all requirements of the ISEAL Code of Good Practice for Setting Social and Environmental Standards. This involves wide consultation with stakeholders to ensure that new and revised standards reflect Fairtrade International’s strategic objectives, are based on producers’ and traders’ realities and meet consumers’ expectations.

You are kindly invited to participate in this consultation on the Flowers and Plants Standard limited review. For this purpose, we kindly ask you to comment on the proposed changes to the requirements suggested in this document and encourage you to give explanations, analysis and examples underlying your statements. All information we receive from respondents will be treated with care and kept confidential.

Please submit your comments by 07.08.2014. If you have any questions regarding the project or the consultation process, please contact the Project Manager, Lucy Russell (standards-pricing@fairtrade.net).

Following the consultation round we will prepare a paper compiling the comments made, which will be emailed to all participants and also be available at www.fairtrade.net/standards-work-in-progress.html under the section for the flowers and plants limited review project. Taking into account all the comments received, the draft standard will be amended and presented to the Standards Committee (SC) for approval in September 2014.

2. Background

The Fairtrade Standard for Flowers and Plants was introduced just over 10 years ago. Since then Fairtrade flowers have grown to become one of the top seven Fairtrade products, with more than 50,000 workers employed on Fairtrade certified flower farms in 2012.

However, Fairtrade plant sales have been significantly lower, with currently only three certified producer organizations. One reason for this is that the standard currently only allows for plants to be imported at a “finished stage”, which is expensive due to high transport costs. The market opportunities for plants lie in trading young plants and young plant material, which are cheaper to transport.

Large amounts of labour are involved not only in the production of finished pot plants, but also in the production of young plant material. This labour is currently not certifiable and therefore workers involved cannot have the opportunity of benefitting from Fairtrade. National Fairtrade organizations (NFOs) have received specific requests from industry to allow for young plant material to be traded as Fairtrade certified, and in particular from retail for specific products such as Fairtrade poinsettia which are made out of young plants grown in developing countries. Global Product Management (GPM) for Flowers and Plants have been researching the feasibility and implications of such potential changes, both at producer and market level.

The proposals presented in this consultation paper aim to adapt the standard to the market realities and harness a growth opportunity so that increased sales in Fairtrade plants can impact more workers’ lives, while at the same time addressing the identified risks.

3. Objectives

To broaden the scope of the Flowers and Plants Standard to include young plants and young plant material for plants. This would open up the scope to include different types of production systems, which would enable more market uptake, thereby increasing the reach of impact to more workers.

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