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Fair Trade in times of crisis

From Andrzej Żwawa │ Fairtrade Polska

Undoubtedly, the current crisis will have a huge negative impact on the world’s economy. Vulnerable farmers and workers from the Global South will certainly be among those most affected by the glooming recession. We are in touch with companies, offering our support in responsible marketing of their Fairtrade products. At the same time, we are using social media and other communication channels to convince consumers that making responsible shopping decisions has now become even more important.
Fairtrade International together with National Fairtrade Organizations, Fairtrade Marketing Organizations and Producer Networks are monitoring the situation and to find every possible way to support Fairtrade producers and businesses in getting through the crisis. One of the immediate measures applied is a new guidance to Fairtrade Standards. As announced by the Standards Committee, producer organizations and Fairtrade-certified plantations have gained more flexibility in spending Fairtrade Premium. The money can now be distributed in cash to farmers and workers, providing them with extra income in this difficult time. Fairtrade Premium can also be spent on hygiene and protective measures, such as disposable gloves or face masks.

We also invite you to take a look at our materials published in English (please click the ‘Pobierz wersję cyfrową’ button to download the PDFs) :

  • Fairtrade Polska 2019 In Review; the report is an overview of activity of Fairtrade Polska in 2019. It includes the most important facts about Fairtrade, our organisation, and the growth of Fairtrade in Poland, as well as a summary of operations.
  • Fairtrade Polska Report for 2018.
  • What is Fairtrade; a leaflet in English explaining how Fairtrade works to support farmers and workers.
  • Fairtrade Empowerment (2017); a case study of cooperation of smallholder banana producers forming the ASOGUABO cooperative in Ecuador.
  • Fairtrade bananas on the Polish Market (2016; published by th Buy Responsibly Foundation); A summary of report about the bananas market in Poland and Europe and guidance on introducing Fairtrade-certified bananas to the Polish market.

Apart from that we have also recently published ‘What is Fairtrade’ leaflets in Russian and Ukrainian. Please click the ‘Pobierz wersję cyfrową’ button to download the PDF.

Apart from that we would also like to recommend you our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/fairtradepolska. Especially, please take a look at the videos regarding the current situation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z2vHX2fda-g and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bp-wAiias9w (here you can see most of our team at work 🙂)

April 2020 Resources (in collaboration with socioeco.org)

In these troubled times, Coronavirus obliges, socioeco.org has created the keyword #COVID-19 with analytical articles on the world after the crisis and on solidarity during the health crisis. For example:

  • Le livre : Économie utile pour des temps difficiles, Abhijit V. Banerjee, Esther Duflo, 2020 [lire]
  • « Relocaliser n’est plus une option mais une condition de survie de nos systèmes économiques et sociaux », Tribune de Maxime Combes, Geneviève Azam, Thomas Coutrot et Christophe Aguiton, Le Monde, 22 mars 2020 [lire]
  • Corona-Krise als Chance zu sozial-ökologischer Transformation? Bernhard Leubolt, 2020 [lire]
  • Here and ready: the value of peasant agriculture in the context of COVID-19, Article European Coordination Via Campesina 26/03/2020 [lire]
  • Video : 2020 Aula Magistral #1 « Entre a utopia e a miopia »: Boaventura de Sousa Santos [lire}
Independant medias talk about SSE
Viñeta Miguel brieva

Independent media are close to the SSE, often by their status and especially by the values they defend. But how do they approach it? Here is a selection of independent media articles mainly on the #COVID-19. You can also find them on the map of socioeco.org: Journalism of Solutions (the articles are located in the city where the experience is taking place or, in the case of a general article, in the city where the media is based).

As you will see, the articles are in their original language, due to the diversity of European countries. This will allow you to perceive which themes are covered by these media: sustainable development, refugees, self-management, cooperatives, organic agriculture, etc. Feel free to send us an article or a media site to improve the map and our knowledge of SSE. Write to Françoise Wautiez: fwautiez[at]socioeco.org


  • Magazine Autre Terre n°5 – L’entreprenariat social, mars 2020 [Lire]
  • Résistance climatique : c’est le moment ! Article de Reporterre, 23 mars 2020 [lire]
  • TRIBUNE. « Plus jamais ça ! » : 18 responsables d’organisations syndicales, associatives et environnementales appellent à préparer « le jour d’après » Tribune de Francetvinfo 27/03/2020 [lire]
  • Au Québec, la crise du coronavirus pourrait ouvrir « le grand chantier de l’autosuffisance » alimentaire, Article de Reporterre, 31 mars 2020 [lire]


  • Revista Alternativas Económicas n°79 – Abril 2020 [Lire]
  • Una cura de solidariad, Artículo de El Salto Diario, Abril 2020 [lire]
  • Qué mundo queremos, Tribuna de El salto Diario, Abril 2020 [lire}


  • Stir Magazine: Spring 2020 : Alternatives for the crisis & Beyond [Lire]
  • Stir to Action New Economy Programme Webinar Series from April to July 2020
  • How Spanish flu helped create Sweden’s modern welfare state, Article of The Guardian, 29/08/2018 [lire]
  • The horror films got it wrong. This virus has turned us into caring neighbours, Article of The Guardian, 31/03/2020 [lire]
Call for specific support measures during the Coronavirus crisis in favour of inclusive and integrating forms of employment

A unified call from ENSIE, RREUSE, Social Firms Europe – CEFEC and CEC.

To the attention of the Presidents and representatives of the European Institutions and Members of the

European Parliament,

To the attention of the representatives of the Governments,

For several weeks now, Europe has been undergoing a period of lockdown in order to combat the spread of the Coronavirus. As you know, the restriction of population movements has resulted in the slowing down and even closure of many businesses, putting a stop to the economies of the countries. The inclusive associations and businesses that we represent are also heavily affected in their activities and a majority of them are forced to stop working. The fate of the people our structures accompany every day is also worrying. These include the low-skilled, the young, the long-term unemployed, the over-50s and disadvantaged minorities. We must also consider those who are otherwise socially marginalised, including women and migrants. Integration Social Enterprises (ISE) and their employees, particularly the most vulnerable, are deeply concerned about the current situation. Together with the various networks representing the ISE, we call for the following actions to alleviate the weight of the crisis on this already sensitive sector.

We welcome the announcements made by the European Commission last week. However, we ask that the following actions be taken into consideration:

  • Ensure and monitor that Member States take into account and support ISEs and their employees.
  • Ensure that the most vulnerable are directly affected by the European Commission’s proposal in its fight against the Coronavirus Investment Initiative to facilitate the deployment of the “European Social Fund to temporarily support national short-term work schemes that help cushion the impact of the shock” and actually benefit from it.
  • Develop a flexible framework for State aid: allow higher thresholds for employment aid and ‘de minimis’ aid for ‘disadvantaged workers and severely disadvantaged workers’.
  • Develop a flexible fiscal framework for the suspension of payments of corporate and value added tax and social contributions .

See the rest of the call here (in French).

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