Fairtrade Labelling Organisations (FLO)

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Fairtrade Labelling was created in the Netherlands in the late 1980s. The Max Havelaar Foundation launched the first Fairtrade consumer guarantee label in 1988 on coffee sourced from Mexico. Today FLO co-ordinates Fairtrade Labelling in 20 countries including the UK. All products carrying the FAIRTRADE Mark meet standards set by the international body Fairtrade Labelling Organisations International (FLO).


FLO International exists to improve the position of the poor and disadvantaged producers in the developing world, by setting the Fairtrade standards and by creating a framework that enables trade to take place at conditions respecting their interest.

The National Initiatives, members of FLO International, encourage industry and consumers to support fairer trade and to purchase the products. Products carry a Fairtrade Label, as the independent consumer guarantee that producers in the developing world get a better deal. All stakeholders involved make their contribution to cover the costs of FLO’s system. Although still partly externally funded, the biggest part of the cost of FLO’s system is covered by National Initiatives who charge their licensees a fee for using the Fairtrade label. This pays for the National Initiatives marketing expenses and a part is fed back to FLO via National Initiatives’ annual contributions. Licensees registered with the National Initiatives do not pay FLO.

A small part of the costs is covered by producer organisations and traders registered with FLO. Producer organisations pay for FLO certification and in addition a yearly fee based on the volume sold under Fairtrade conditions. The traders registered with FLO also contribute based on their total annual turnover.

FLO also receives support from the European Commission (EC)

The UK's national initiative is the Fairtrade Foundation UK.



Full FLO members:

  • Fairtrade Austria
  • Max Havelaar Belgium
  • Transfair Canada
  • Max Havelaar Denmark
  • Max Havelaar France
  • TransFair Germany
  • Fairtrade Foundation UK
  • TransFair Italy
  • Fairtrade Mark Ireland
  • Fairtrade Label Japan
  • TransFair Minka Luxemburg
  • Stichting Max Havelaar Netherlands
  • Max Havelaar Norge
  • Reilun kaupan edistämisyhdistys ry. Finland
  • Rättvisemärkt Sweden
  • Max Havelaar Stiftung Switzerland
  • TransFair USA
  • Fairtrade Labelling Australia & New Zealand
  • Asociación para el Sello de Comercio Justo España

Associate FLO member:

  • Comercio Justo Mexico


Contact Address

FLO International, Bonner Talweg 177, D - 53129 Bonn, Germany


External Links



Link back to Fairtrade main page