97% of teens aware of Fairtrade Mark, 62% want more Fairtrade at home.

Young people in the UK have been dubbed ‘Generation Fairtrade’ in a new survey that has discovered just how much teenagers care about global, environmental and ethical issues.

The Fairtrade Foundation survey shows that UK teenagers are willing to take action to bring about change, especially as they have grown up with the Fairtrade Mark, which turns 20-years-old this week (October 13).


Nearly two-thirds (62%) said they would like to see more Fairtrade at home, and around three quarters said they wanted to buy more ethical and sustainable products – presenting an opportunity for brands who can bring ethical products to the market at a price point this generation can afford.

More than eight in 10 of teenagers surveyed (82%) said they think companies need to act more responsibly, but fewer than half (45%) said they trust companies to behave ethically.

Just one in 10 believe governments and companies will improve conditions in the future, or to the extent that the Fairtrade movement will no longer be needed.

Almost all of the teens surveyed, a staggering 97%, said that they see the Fairtrade Mark sometimes or often, making it the most widely recognised ethical label among young people.

More than half of ‘Generation Fairtrade’ admitted they are extremely worried about Fairtrade issues, including inequality, poverty, workers’ rights, human rights and child labour issues.

40% of those questioned said they would take part in an event to encourage ethical change, while 78% said they would actively participate in online petitions, especially on social media.

Commenting on the survey’s findings, Michael Gidney, chief executive of the Fairtrade Foundation, said: “From fast fashion to constant upgrades to their smartphones, you might be forgiven for thinking that today’s teens only care about a product’s price tag and whether it looks cool enough to be Instagrammed. But ‘Generation Fairtrade’ also care deeply about some of the biggest global issues that we face.

“They have grown up with Fairtrade products at home, and may even have attended one of the UK’s 1,000 Fairtrade schools – so they are aware that by taking a simple action such as buying Fairtrade or signing an online petition, they can persuade businesses and governments to act more ethically – and the good news for all of us is that they want to use their power to change the world for the better.”

In 2013 alone, UK shoppers bought an estimated £1.7 billion of Fairtrade products, which resulted in over £26 million of Fairtrade Premiums being paid to producers.