Fairtrade Executive Director: Looking ahead to a momentous year

22 January 2024   |   Amanda Archila, Executive Director of Fairtrade America
Indonesia coffee producers

The start of a new year is a natural time to reflect and plan ambitiously for the weeks and months ahead. Our Fairtrade team is finalizing our goals for 2024, and as we’re pursuing accelerated growth and impact, I am particularly grateful for the strong foundation of a global community of individuals and businesses who are actively building a future that’s fair.

I stepped into my role as Executive Director nearly one year ago, and in the months since I’ve had the privilege of leading a passionate and skilled team that successfully launched 16 new Fairtrade partnerships with nearly 100 newly certified products. Our latest consumer research revealed that 61% of shoppers recognize our Fairtrade label, more than doubling awareness in just four years.

All of our US brand partners are doing inspiring work to lead their industries toward more sustainable operations. I’m so encouraged by the growth of our partners and their dedication to also strengthening the businesses of the farmers that grow their ingredients. It’s those farmers who inspire our whole team with their resilience and resolve. More than 2 million producers are spurring Fairtrade toward bigger and bolder work in 2024.

Cocoa farmer Bengaly Bourama is featured in a mural on the Urban Greens Cooperative Market in Providence, Rhode Island.

I saw that work in action during Fairtrade Month this past October when I had the privilege of joining the unveiling of one of our 12 Fairtrade murals around the country. Each mural features the image of a farmer that was crafted by incredible local artists. The mural I visited stands proudly on the building of the Urban Greens Cooperative Market in Providence, Rhode Island, and features Bengaly Bourama, a cocoa farmer and leader of COOBADI, a Fairtrade certified cocoa cooperative in Cote d’Ivoire. His portrait was designed and painted by the local artist AGONZA, and Bengaly’s cooperative supplies cocoa for Ben & Jerry’s ice cream.

As we gathered inside Urban Greens, I was moved by the joy and solidarity reflected in the words of our partners: local grocers dedicated to providing sustainable food to their community, farmers working hard to offer better livelihoods for their families, artists inspired to tell the stories of those who are often less visible in our food chains, shoppers looking to reflect their values in their purchases and brands who are stepping up to do their part to ensure a brighter future for people and planet. I am honored to be a part of this collective work, and I am deeply optimistic about the year ahead.

With all this momentum, the time is ripe for meaningful action. There’s a lot to do, and it’s going to take investments of time, resources, energy and influence from all corners of the Fairtrade community to achieve the vision we’re all after: a world where all producers can enjoy secure and sustainable livelihoods.

Thank you for your contribution to making trade fairer for farmers and workers, and I look forward to seeing all that this community will achieve together in 2024.

– Amanda Archila, Executive Director of Fairtrade America 

We’re in this together

Fairtrade America partners with brands on the journey to certification and beyond. We can help with everything from finding a certified supply chain to marketing your newly certified product.

Get in Touch

Explore More