This paper aims to consider the impact of Fair Trade on producers with particular reference to women involved in Fair Trade production.
The paper considers Fair Trade as an alternative to rational economic models of free trade and as a tool for development. A gender and development (GAD) perspective is used to assess whether Fair Trade empowers women in developing nations.
Fair Trade offers an alternative to free trade within capitalist production and has a positive impact for producers. The impact on gender relations within producer communities is limited although there are benefits for some women involved in Fair Trade production.
The paper is based on secondary data and highlights the need for more focused research, which explores the links between gender, cultural relations and Fair Trade.
Understanding that while Fair Trade is usually considered as a positive developmental tool, its impacts are not homogeneous and are subject to the cultural gender relations that exist in producer communities. The paper highlights the need for a more systematic and longitudinal analysis of the impact of Fair Trade for women.
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