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Fairtrade Eastern Africa | February 27, 2020

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I’m a business and would like to support African farmers through Fairtrade, what do I need to do?

In order to apply the FAIRTRADE Label onto a product, businesses must comply with the relevant Fairtrade Standards. Consumers can therefore be confident that the Fairtrade labelled product they buy has been grown and traded according to Fairtrade rules and that the premiums were paid to the farming communities.


I am a retailer and would like to sell Fairtrade products:

Contact us on and we will be happy to put you in touch with suppliers.


I am a trader and would like to sell unfinished Fairtrade goods:

You will need to be audited and certified as an operator with FLO-Cert, Fairtrade International’s independent certification body. Please contact and they will advise on how to proceed.


I am a brand owner and would like to certify my products as Fairtrade:

All companies licensed to use the FAIRTRADE Mark on certified products have a signed licence agreement with the Fairtrade system. This agreement includes adherence to the Fairtrade Standards, paying the relevant fees to Fairtrade Eastern Africa on time and not bringing the FAIRTRADE Mark into disrepute.

If you are the brand owner of a consumer-ready Fairtrade certified product (e.g. a pack of coffee, a chocolate bar) and you want to use the FAIRTRADE Mark on the packaging, the following are steps to take.

Please note as Fairtrade Eastern Africa is a marketing organization only, it will facilitate the licensing process but will be using another member of Fairtrade system to do the licensing service. We will remain the main contact at the beginning of the process and ongoing.

Step 1 – Licensing Questionnaire
Contact us to request the Licensing Questionnaire. The questionnaire will ask you to give us a breakdown of your supply chain and to specify in which countries you want to sell your Fairtrade product. The information you provide will be treated with highest confidentiality.

We will request that you inform us of your product composition:

Wherever ingredients can be Fairtrade, they should be sourced as Fairtrade.

a) Single ingredient products
For products such as tea and coffee, which contain a single ingredient, this must be 100% Fairtrade.

b) Composite products

For products that contain both Fairtrade and non-Fairtrade ingredients, we have composition rules to reassure consumers about the level of Fairtrade ingredients within a particular product. You will need to submit your recipe to us showing the percentage levels of each ingredient in your product applications. For more detail please contact us.

Step 2 – Artwork Approval
Once your Licensing Questionnaire is approved, we will send you the Guidelines for the use of the FAIRTRADE Mark and we will ask you to send us a copy of your packaging / design for Artwork Approval. This step is essential because we must make sure that the FAIRTRADE Mark is used correctly, e.g. that it is not stretched, too small or big, that it shows the right colours, etc.

Step 3 – Licensing Contract
Once the above steps are approved, we will send you the Licensing Contract. After signing the contract you become an official Licensee and you can start selling your Fairtrade labelled products.

Additionally, you will be responsible for:

  • Reporting
    Your business will be required to submit quarterly reports declaring all Fairtrade sales made by your business. These reports will be used to calculate the amount of licence fee to be invoiced by Fairtrade Eastern Africa, as well as generating our annual Fairtrade sales figures.
  • Licence Fee

Licensed products are charged a fee of 2% of the wholesale value (or net invoiced value) in order to cover administrative costs, and is used to market Fairtrade products and grow awareness of the FAIRTRADE Mark.