Fairtrade is accused of doing less for coffee farmers than Starbucks

The Guardian looks at the IEA's latest research paper

Multinational companies such as Starbucks, Kraft and Nestlé do more for developing-world coffee farmers than the Fairtrade Foundation, according to a critical report from a free-market thinktank.

Describing Fairtrade as costly, opaque and substantially unproven, the 130-page report commissioned by the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) says: "Fairtrade requirements [on farmers] may well reflect the subjective views of western consumers and not the real needs of poor producers."

The report specifically attacks the Fairtrade Foundation's refusal to accept child labour and genetically modified technology, suggesting these strictures represent "the whims of western consumers" rather than the needs of farmers.

Read the rest of the article on The Guardian website.

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