FairActivists on the road: Meeting with Fairtrade America in Washington D.C.

On a nice sunny day on the US east coast, one of the FairActivists had the chance to visit Fairtrade America. The office is right in downtown Washington D.C. and Darina spoke with Kate and Julia about their experiences with Fairtrade so far.

With their knowledge about sustainability and international development Kate Stritzinger, Director Marketing & External Relations, and Julia Barnes, Marketing Assistant are in charge of running the campaigns of Fairtrade throughout the whole country and on social media platforms. Last year, the success of the campaign „Choose Fairtrade. Choose The World You Want“[1] has been reflected not only in Americans‘ increased awareness of fair trade itself but also in Fairtrade as the brand.

“According to our 2021 Fairtrade Consumer Insights report conducted by GlobeScan,41% of respondents recognized the Fairtrade Mark in the US. This is a 46% increase from our study  just two years earlier. It is really motivating to see this kind of promising movement here in the states.”[2] – Kate Stritzinger, Director Marketing & External Relations

Through six different cities across the US, they created six murals  in collaboration with local artists on the sides of buildings where Fairtrade products are sold. The paintings highlight individual Fairtrade farmers. Next to the Fairtrade sign, you’ll find a QR code to scan and to read each individual story of the featured farmer. Currently, there are murals in Austin (Texas), Denver (Colorado), Los Angeles (California), Nashville (Tennessee), Minneapolis (Minnesota), Tacoma (Washington) to see. There will be three more created in October.


Johnny Gabriel Navas Aquim is a banana farmer from Ecuador. His mural was painted by Reggie LeFlore and it is located at Twin Cities Co-op Partners‘ Wedge Location in Minneapolis. Photo by: Andrés Pérez. For more info about Johnny and his work go to https://www.fairtradeamerica.org/choose-the-world-you-want/minneapolis/



In addition to well-known brands such as Starbucks, Ben & Jerrys, and Tony’s Chocolonely chocolate, local labels are signing up as Fairtrade brand partners, like Lily’s Sweets, Endangered Species Chocolate and Hu Kitchene. Right now, the focus is still on the increasing core products like cocoa, bananas and coffee in becoming Fairtrade because there are so many companies that could still get certified. In the future, however, other products will be added.

For 10 years now, Fairtrade America has been working to spread awareness of Fairtrade products in the United States and to help to get more brands on board for a world in which farmers get paid fairly. Since 2020, Peg Willingham has served as the Executive Director of Fairtrade America and with her, she brings a lot of expertise in advocacy work. Peg along with her small but efficient team (around 13 employees) at Fairtrade America is on the path for more Fairtrade certified products in all American supermarkets.  Her experience also provides new opportunities to raise the issue of fair trade, in general, higher on the agenda of US politicians. 

On their websites it says; “Fairtrade is the most recognized ethical label in the world“[3] and we as the FairActivists are happy to be part of this worldwide mission!

























[1] https://www.fairtradeamerica.org/choose-the-world-you-want/ , https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/fairtrade-americas-second-annual-choose-fairtrade-choose-the-world-you-want-campaign-raises-awareness-of-fairtrades-positive-impacts-on-people-and-the-planet-301389246.html

[2] https://www.fairtradeamerica.org/app/uploads/2021/08/Fairtrade-America-Globescan-2021-Report.pdf

[3] https://www.fairtradeamerica.org/