How everyday actions in the workplace can make for a fairer world

Workers enjoying Fairtrade tea

Ever wondered the impact of your morning cuppa at work?

Who can possibly end world hunger or achieve comprehensive climate action on their own? At least, that’s the catch-cry of people who want to good in the world, but don’t know how. After all, in the face of such enormous global inequality, it can be hard to see how the actions of one person can create change.

But equality begins at home and in the workplace, where even the tiniest everyday decisions can make a huge difference in the broader scheme of things. Thinking about how much coffee and tea you drink over an average week, it takes only a short amount of time before each drink adds up to something much larger on a global scale. 

Here’s the good news: this can actually be quite easy! At Fairtrade, we focus on both the global picture and on the small, everyday actions you can take to make the world a fairer place. That’s why we believe that the simplest action – like enjoying some coffee, tea or chocolate in your workplace – can empower farmers and workers.

What are we aiming for exactly?

Enter the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These cover everything from responsible consumption and ending poverty to gender equality. They’re goals that strive for inclusive economic growth and climate action – and they align perfectly with what we do here at Fairtrade.

When you first think about the SDGs, it might seem like it's impossible to achieve them. Not so! Here's what your morning cuppa can do to help the lives of smallholder farmers - and you don't even have to leave the office.

Why should you stock Fairtrade products in your workplace?

Next time you brew your morning coffee, make it Fairtrade. You'll not only get a caffeine hit, but some of your money will go towards making the Sustainable Development Goals more achievable:

  • Provide decent work and economic growth (goal number 8). The money from your coffee goes straight back into the farming cooperatives, meaning farmers can plan for the future, invest in their businesses and communities, save to send their kids to school and access vital healthcare.
  • Achieve gender equality (goal number 5). Filling your workplace with Fairtrade-labelled products means women can access opportunities they’ve never seen before, such as agriculture and business training, job opportunities, property ownership, independence and the ability to make their voices heard. It’s a huge step towards creating gender equality worldwide and it starts with your workplace.
  • Combat climate change (goal number 13). Rising sea levels and erratic weather mean farmers are not able to combat climate change on their own. But with Fairtrade, farmers are able to join a cooperative group and pool resources, access training on improved farming techniques, develop rainwater irrigation and prevent diseases in plants. They are better able to prepare their farms for what's to come and protect their crops and livelihoods.

Your cup of tea or coffee, or your chocolate bar, can help farmers achieve things that they couldn’t achieve on their own, and gives them access to funds that can make their future more secure. Simply by stocking your workplace with Fairtrade coffee, tea or chocolate and enjoying a treat at your desk, you’re ensuring a brighter future for people in developing nations.