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Fair trade takes off in Belgium

Published on 07/10/2004

7 October 2004

BRUSSELS – Sales of ‘fair trade’ goods in Belgium increased considerably last year, it was reported on Thursday.

In 2003, sales of fair trade products totalled EUR 26.5 million, an increase of 58 percent on the 2001 figure.

The fair trade scheme aims to ensure producers in the developing world receive a reasonable price for the goods they sell in developed countries like Belgium.

In a bid to woo even more consumers over to fair trade products, Co-operation and Development Minister Armand De Decker announced on Wednesday that Belgium would be holding its third Fair Trade Week.

The event, which despite being called a week will actually last for ten days, would run from 6-16 October, said De Decker.

Fair Trade Week is designed to boost sales “by showing the public that these products are good value for money and that they are available almost everywhere”, said Samuel Poos from Belgium’s Fair Trade Centre.

Although fair trade companies’ share of the market remains a modest one, more and more consumers are interested in buying goods that have been ethically produced.
Fair trade label Max Havelaar, for instance, this year recorded its largest growth in sales for 10 years.

[Copyright Expatica 2004]

Subject: Belgian news