More than 350,000 tea and coffee farmers will benefit from a new partnership that will address their market issues.
The deal between Fairtrade Africa (FTA) and African Organisation for Standardisation (ARSO) will see tea, coffee and vegetable farmers fetch better prices from their produce, and have better access to local and global markets.
The deal includes implementation of the Eco Mark Africa (EMA) label will promote issuance of dual marks for products licensed to use the Fairtrade mark.
The mark means products produced by small-scale farmer organisations or plantations meet Fairtrade social, economic and environmental standards.
Speaking in Nairobi during the signing, Dr Nyagoy Nyong’o, Executive Director, Fairtrade Africa, said Fairtrade is at the forefront of global certification scheme in partnering with ARSO to deliver benefits to farmers and consumers under the Continental Free Trade Area.
“The African farmer is investing a lot in sustainable production but not getting any sufficient market for his/her product. In keeping with the sustainability goal number 17, Fairtrade is committed to building partnerships for sustainable development for farmers to get an opportunity to get more market within Africa and beyond,” she said.
EMA will support in particular, Small and Medium sized Enterprises to get certified and gain access to niche markets, said Dr Hermogene Nsengimana, ARSO’s Secretary General.