Transfair e. V. is an independent initiative that awards the Fairtrade mark to fairly traded products in Germany – and in doing so raises awareness of the benefits of fairly traded products among a broad class of consumers. The association is based in Cologne and employs over 70 employees. It works to improve the living and working conditions for smallholders and workers on plantations in the Global South via fair trading conditions. Since 2015, the association has engaged in carbon accounting and offset the main drivers behind its emissions, which include travel, heating its office buildings, and its employees’ commutes to and from work. Now, 100% of its electricity comes from renewable sources of energy. The 1,700-plus Fairtrade-certified agricultural producer organisations in the Global South can also take advantage of Fairtrade advisory services on adapting to climate change.
Collaboration With the Alliance
Transfair e. V. addresses climate change and its dramatic consequences, especially in emerging and developing economies. The organisation also provides information on the Development and Climate Alliance. At the same time, it reaches a significant audience in Germany through its communication channels and Germany-wide campaigns – which focus on Fairtrade towns (over 600 towns and communities), Fairtrade schools (over 700 schools) and Fairtrade universities (30 universities).
Transfair e. V. funds a project run by the Fair Climate Fund and the Janara Samuha Benefit Trust that provides women in Raichur (India) with more sustainable stoves. 18,000 households have therefore moved from the inefficient, traditional way of cooking on an open fire to using an efficient ‘Chulika’ stove. These stoves have a 30 per cent thermal efficiency and require 67.5 per cent less firewood compared to the traditional means of cooking. This is important in Raichur, since the region is very dry and only a few forested areas remain. By decreasing the demand for firewood, the project reduces greenhouse gas emissions and prevents forests from being cleared. The project also reduces the load on women, who have to cover long distances to collect firewood. They save up to two hours a day. Furthermore, the Chulika stoves contribute to a better quality of life, since there is less smoke in the kitchen.
When selecting offsetting initiatives, the association takes care to ensure that the projects chosen are certified, make a lasting contribution to development, and a fair price is paid. In 2019, Transfair e. V. offset all of its emissions from the previous year, which amounted to 228 tonnes in total.
Deputy Chairman of the Supervisory Board at TransFair
Photo credits: Fairtrade, estivillml, Fairtrade/Anand Parmar, Brot für die Welt/Bredehorst, myclimate, FORLIANCE, TSG 1899 Hoffenheim Fußball-Spielbetriebs GmbH