Is this a sign of inflation or of consumers taking responsibility? While they spent an average of €32 a year on Fairtrade-labelled products in 2018, a figure that rose to €39 in 2020, people in Luxembourg are now spending €60, according to the latest figures from Fairtrade Lëtzebuerg.
The NGO, which labels fair trade products in Luxembourg according to an international list of criteria (working conditions, traceability, environmental responsibility, etc.), published on Monday 17 July a report on “Fair Trade Figures 2022 in Luxembourg.”
Turnover generated by sales of all Fairtrade products from the NGO’s various partners reached €39m, an increase of 14% compared to 2021.
Fairtrade Lëtzebuerg explains this growth by the “loyal support of consumers and partners, i.e., local authorities, schools, administrations, businesses and commercial partners.”
4,165 Fairtrade-labelled products in Luxembourg
There are 25 Fairtrade sub-licensees in Luxembourg, offering an ever-growing range of certified products (medium and large supermarkets, grocery shops, organic shops, etc.). There are now a total of 4,165 Fairtrade-labelled products on the market, including 758 new products.
181 brands offering Fairtrade products are present on the Luxembourg market, including 25 Luxembourg brands. They offer a total of 406 Fairtrade-labelled products. 75 were introduced in 2022. Examples include Luxlait chocolate milk and Molkerei Thiry and Biogros ice creams.
The NGO’s partners also include 37 Fairtrade Gemeng-certified communities and 26 schools that are certified as Fairtrade Schools.
Cocoa up, sugar down
In detail, 641 tonnes of cocoa were used to make chocolate products, an increase of 137% in one year. For coffee, the increase was 11%. Luxembourg roasters account for 40% of the Fairtrade market. Banana sales rose by 2% to reach 1.967 tonnes in 2022. Rice sales are up by 22%, and fruit juices by 16.8%.
“Thanks to the Fairtrade gold bars sold by the Banque et Caisse d’Épargne de l’État (BCEE) [Spuerkeess, editor’s note], the Fairtrade gold market in Luxembourg has grown significantly, with 9.5 kilos sold in 2022. Two Luxembourg jewellers also work with Fairtrade gold from artisanal mines in Peru,” the NGO explains.
Other sectors have fared less well, notably sugar, which has fallen by 9%. “This drop is due in particular to the discontinuation of a range of Fairtrade jams by choice of the distributor.” 529,805 stems of Fairtrade roses were sold, down 8.5% compared to 2021.
The organisation also regrets that the cotton sector is developing too slowly. “Very few brands today offer Fairtrade-certified clothing.”
As a result of this work, the umbrella organisation Fairtrade International has been able to pay producers €217m in premiums by 2022. A total of 1.9m producers in 1,910 Fairtrade-certified producer organisations in more than 70 countries will benefit.
This article was first published in French on Paperjam. It has been translated and edited for Delano.