Center for Fair and Alternative Trade: Colorado State University


This poster was presented by Douglas Murray of Colorado State University at the Horticulture Innovation Lab's 2010 Inception Workshop in Singapore in relation to the project, "Integrating Rooibos tea farmers with fair-trade markets in South Africa," led by Laura Raynolds, also of Colorado State University.

Center for Fair and Alternative Trade (CFAT) Mission:

CFAT provides objective and in‐depth analysis of market‐based social change that supports the growth of the conscious consumer economy in the 21st century.

We are a multidisciplinary research center. Rather than engaging in advocacy, we seek to advance the quest for social justice and sustainability by providing critical and scholarly studies of fair and alternative trade,  product certification, worker rights, and other promising initiatives.

What is Fair Trade?

Fair and alternative trade are examples of market-based approaches to alleviating poverty and promoting environmental sustainability through innovative business models spanning production, distribution and consumption. Examples include: fair trade and organic certification schemes, sustainable/certified forest product initiatives, payment for environmental services, fair labor practices, corporate social responsibility, sustainable tourism, community-supported agriculture, and 'Be Local' economic development. 

Current Projects:

  • "Improving Market Access for Emerging South African Rooibos Tea Farmers," funded by the Horticulture Innovation Lab and USAID
  • "Fair Flowers: Fair Trade, Gender & Socio-Economic Conditions in the Global Cut Flower Commodity Chain," funded by the National Science Foundation
  • "Globally Fair, Locally Sustainable: Fort Collins Community Marketplace," funded by Fort Collins Downtown Development Authority
  • "No Como Veneno: Strengthening Local Organic Markets in the Peruvian Andes," funded by Centro Internacional de la Papa & International Development Research Centre

Recent Publications:

  • Raynolds, Laura and Siphelo U. Ngcwangu. 2010. "Fair Trade Rooibos Tea Networks: Connecting South African Producers and American Consumer Markets." Geo-Forum, 41: 74-83. 
  • Raynolds, Laura T. 2009. "Mainstreaming Fair Trade Coffee: From Partnership to Traceability." World Development. 37 (6): 1083-1093. 
  • Raynolds, Laura and Jennifer Keahey. 2008. "Fair Trade, Gender, and the Enviroment in Africa." Handbook in Trade and Environment. 
  • Raynolds, Laura T. 2008. "The Organic Agro-Export Boom in the Dominican Republic: Maintaining Tradition or Fostering Transformation?" Latin American Research Review. 43 (1): 161-184. 
  • Keahey, Jennifer A., Mary A. Littrell, and Douglas L. Murray. Forthcoming. "Business with a Mission: The Ongoing Role of Ten Thousand Villages within the Fair Trade Movement."



South Africa