Small producers and democratic cooperatives are central to the founding principles of the fair trade movement and market. By definition, small producers are vulnerable, excluded and under-resourced in the global market. In the coffee sector, small farmers produce approximately 70% of the global coffee supply. Despite the current high prices in the coffee market, fair trade co-ops are still unable to sell the majority of their coffee under fair trade terms. Expanding fair trade certification and market access to large-scale plantations will assure that fair trade cooperatives continue to remain vulnerable to volatile international markets and undermine 25 years of fair trade development. Fair Trade USA is moving forward with "fair trade" certification of coffee plantations in 2012. IMO’s Fair for Life standards allow for certification of hired labor operations in any sector, and Fairtrade International (FLO) has considered certifying coffee plantations. Send a letter to urge these top three fair trade certifiers not to certify plantation coffee.

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