Ben & Jerry’s Converts to Fair Trade

Ben & Jerry’s Converts to Fair Trade

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ben-jerrys-carton.jpgJoining Cadbury in the pantheon of sweet-makers to announce commitments to fully embrace the Fair Trade movement, Ben & Jerry’s vowed that all its flavors in every country where the ice cream is sold will be manufactured using Fair Trade Certified™ ingredients by the end of 2013.

Ben & Jerry’s was the first ice cream company in the world to use Fair Trade Certified™ ingredients starting in 2005, and today it’s racing ahead as the first ice cream company to make such a significant commitment to Fair Trade across its global portfolio.

Company co-founder Jerry Greenfield said, ”Fair Trade is about making sure people get their fair share of the pie. The whole concept of Fair Trade goes to the heart of our values and sense of right and wrong.”

Fair Trade means that certified farmers are using environmentally sound practices to grow and harvest their crops in a sustainable way.  Farmers selling Fair Trade products earn a better income, which allows them to stay on their land.

Ben & Jerry’s Fair Trade commitment means that every ingredient that can be sourced Fair Trade Certified™, now or in the future, will be purchased as such. Globally, this involves converting up to 121 different chunks and swirls, working across eleven different ingredients such as cocoa, banana, vanilla and other flavorings, fruits, and nuts. It also means working with Fair Trade cooperatives that total a combined membership of over 27,000 farmers.

Rob Cameron, Chief Executive of Fairtrade Labelling Organizations International (FLO) said, “Congratulations to Ben & Jerry’s on the scale and the depth of this commitment to take their whole product line Fair Trade. Tackling poverty and sustainable agriculture through trade may not be easy but it is always worth it, and Ben & Jerry’s has demonstrated real leadership in laying out this long-term ambition to engage with smallholders, who grow nuts, bananas, vanilla, cocoa and other Fair Trade-certified ingredients.”

Paul Rice, President and CEO of TransFair USA, says, “Ben & Jerry’s has been a model for socially responsible business for 32 years, proving that being responsible and sustainable are good for business. Their entry into Fair Trade in 2005 builds on that history and has had a real impact on the lives of family farmers around the world. By converting their ingredients to Fair Trade, Ben & Jerry’s will help galvanize its suppliers to join the Fair Trade movement. That represents a huge leap forward for Fair Trade in the United States, and it’s once again the kind of bold, pioneering move for which the company is known and admired.”