By Matthew Anderson
This ebook deals an unique contribution to the empirical wisdom of the advance of reasonable exchange that is going past the anecdotal money owed to problem and examine the buying and selling practices that formed the reasonable exchange version. reasonable exchange represented a brand new method of international exchange, company social accountability and shopper politics.
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Additional resources for A History of Fair Trade in Contemporary Britain: From Civil Society Campaigns to Corporate Compliance
Oxfam did face commercial pressures, but this was driven more by the declining fashionability of handcrafts rather than consumer indifference to ethical concerns. By the late 1980s, with the trend for ‘ethnic crafts’ declining Oxfam recognised that the food sector looked likely to emerge as an important market for Fair Trade. But the dilemma for Oxfam Trading managers was that Oxfam shops did not seem well-positioned to expand their range of Fair Trade food products. 109 The structure of the Oxfam Fair Trade Company was evolving – but slowly.
Perhaps more than any other organisation, Oxfam has shown the potential and limitations of an approach to Fair Trade that sought to unite commercial, political and charitable objectives. Over the last 40 years the social, economic and political context of international development has changed dramatically, and Oxfam’s Fair Trade programme has adapted to, and at times influenced, the re-evaluations and changes in development philosophy, business ethics and charity law. Perhaps the most significant change in recent years has been Oxfam’s engagement with the political dimensions of trade and international development, (and the general acceptance by the British public and government of this role).
An internal evaluation of Oxfam’s international trading programme, undertaken in the mid-1980s, offered an opportunity to review key achievements and reconsider the position of trade within the wider context of Oxfam’s work. 35 In practice, throughout the 1960s, Oxfam’s HbS programme was trading along essentially commercial lines. Products imported from the ‘Third World’ were to be stocked in Oxfam’s shops and sold for a profit which would then contribute towards Oxfam’s international relief and development work.