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Fairtrade Fortnight survey

Ethical products ‘too costly’ say shoppers

Almost half of Scottish shoppers are put off buying ethical products because they believe they are too expensive, new research has revealed. 

The survey also found that 13% of consumers “don’t trust claims” made about ethically-sourced products.  

The figures are revealed at the start of Fair Trade fortnight and contrast with the claim by a majority of Scotland’s local authorities to have fair trade status.

Quality of products is a regarded as the most important factor (88.8%) when considering where to shop, followed by price (86.4%),  location (70.2%) and then the ethical credentials of the store (48.5%).

The survey, commissioned by the Fairtrade Foundation ahead of Fairtrade Fortnight beginning today, found that more than half (50.3%) were unaware of exploitation in the food chain while almost a quarter (24.2%) of consumers admit to never thinking about who produces their food and drink.

Only 9.3% of the survey admitted to ‘always’ thinking about who produces their food and drink.

The most purchased Fairtrade product is coffee (46.6%), just ahead of bananas (46%) with sugar at 29.8%. 

Research by the Scottish Fair Trade Forum suggests a more positive approach to ethical products, pointing to 60% of consumers choosing Fairtrade products at least once a month.

Scotland was recognised as a Fairtrade Nation in 2013 after all cities and a majority of our local authorities gained Fairtrade status.

More than 80% of Scottish councils are now recognised as Fairtrade areas, along with around 100 Fairtrade communities around the country. 

Fairtrade Fortnight runs from 26 Feb to 11 March and is a national celebration of the positive impact that Fairtrade has on the world.

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