CRITERIA FOR FAIRLY TRADED NATURAL RUBBER​

The members of the Fair Rubber Association pay 0.50 € per kilogram of Dry Rubber Content (DRC) to the Fair Rubber Association. This Fair Trade premium is passed on by the Fair Rubber Association to separate accounts to those supplier partners, from whom the Fairly traded rubber was sourced. The following are the main criteria for the use of the premiums:

  • The Fair Trade premium may only be used for the improvement of the living and working conditions of the primary producers of natural rubber. The key is: these primary producers decide themselves how to use the premium.
  • In the case of plantation partners, they must have a joint body which consists of elected representatives of workers and delegates from the management. This body exclusively decides what the Fair Trade Premiums are to be spent on. In the case of small farmer associations, it is usually the board which decides about the use of the Fair Trade premiums.
Since 2018, the Fair Rubber Association has developed its own criteria catalogue for Fairly traded natural rubber, which is audited by independent auditors. Unlike other certifications, the Fair Rubber Association pays the costs of these audits.

The Fair Rubber criteria are closely based on the relevant criteria of Fairtrade Labeling Organizations (FLO) International – rubber plantations are structurally very similar to tea plantations: In India and Sri Lanka, for example, rubber and tea plantations are often run by the same operating companies – and the workforce belongs to the same unions. As far as the environment is concerned, the Fair Rubber criteria include the relevant criteria of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) – the majority of the supplier partners are also FSC certified (and here the Fair Rubber Association also partly finances the audit costs).

For supplier partners that already have the FLO or FSC certification, or that are certified organic, only a small part of the Fair Rubber criteria needs to be reviewed separately: our aim is to help disadvantaged producers – not to overload them with never-ending audit requirements. Fairly traded rubber has only a tiny market share. However, since 2012 a little more than 600 tonnes of Dry Rubber Content have been traded according to the criteria of the Fair Rubber Association. This is equivalent to EUR 300,000 Fair Trade premium (as of end of 2018).