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To increase the profit margin, Sainsbury's, the world’s largest retailer of Fairtrade products, precipitated the greatest crisis in the scheme’s 25-year history by telling the 13 major tea groups and their 228,000 co-operative members that it intended to drop the globally known Fairtrade mark for their produce, and replace it with the phrase “fairly traded”. This means that there will be no independent organisation setting the standards. How fair the trading is will be decided in-house by Sainsbury's and the farmers will start losing as soon as next week.

If Sainsbury’s launch their own ‘ethical’ line instead of using the Fairtrade model, other supermarkets might follow suit and consider ditching Fairtrade too,”

A statement signed by Oxfam, Cafod, Christian Aid, the Women’s Institute and several major ethical trading and co-operative groups, together representing millions of consumers, urged it to rethink its plans.

“The Fairtrade mark has become synonymous with ethical trade and quality for UK consumers. Sainsbury’s new scheme risks undermining all that has been achieved over the last 25 years. The standards are unclear, and farmers and producers may no longer be able to decide themselves directly how the money raised is spent to help their communities,” said the groups.

Boycotting the new scheme will not help, so a petition showing to the big retailers how we feel really matters!  

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Nash Popovic needs your help with “Sainsbury's: SAVE FAIRTRADE!”. Join Nash and 363 supporters today.