How to Become a Fairtrade College

The student movement has been central to the rapidly growing success of Fair Trade in Scotland, because so many students are willing to stand up and demand an end to trade injustice and exploitation of workers in developing countries. On this page you can find out how you and your institution can become part of the dynamic core of this movement. 


Why is it important to become a Fairtrade College? 

  • Becoming part of the Fairtrade Universities and Colleges campaign will enable students and staff alike to spread the word about Fair Trade, and show their support for producers in developing countries. 

  • In order to retain Fair Trade Nation status for Scotland, at least 60% of all Scottish HE institutions, along with a good number of FE institutions, must achieve or be working towards achieving Fairtrade Status. 

  • People and Planet publish an annual "Green League", of which Fair Trade is an integral part. Gaining Fairtrade Status will give your institution extra points, enabling it to move up this league.

"Through working to become a Fair Trade Nation, we are working together to ensure that workers and producers in the developing world get a fair deal for their work and a chance to improve their lives and communities." - Richard Miller, former Scottish Fair Trade Forum Board Member


How Do You Become a Fairtrade College?
Simply by passing a policy committing your institution to become Fairtrade and creating a steering group to oversee this process, your institution will already be halfway towards achieving Fairtrade status. The Student Union (or equivalent) and the college authorities can then both create a Fairtrade policy incorporating these goals:

  • The Student Union and the College authorities should both pass a Fairtrade policy incorporating the five goals. The policy has to be reviewed, improved and developed annually.

  • Fairtrade foods are made available for sale in all campus shops, and are used in all cafés, restaurants and bars on campus. Where this is not possible, there is a commitment to begin to use Fairtrade foods in these establishments as soon as it becomes possible to do so.

  • Fairtrade foods -such as coffee and tea- must be served at all meetings hosted by the college and the Student Union (or equivalent), and should be served in all college and Student Union management offices. The college and Student Union will also commit to sourcing Fairtrade cotton products as part of staff uniforms, specialist clothing for courses and merchandise.

  • A commitment must be made to campaign for increased Fairtrade consumption on campus.

  • A Fairtrade Steering Group must be established, involving students and staff.

 You can apply for status through the Fairtrade Foundation:

The Scottish Fair Trade Forum exists to support Fair Trade activity in institutions like yours. Contact us here.