Patagonia Pays Premium to Add Two Top-Selling Products to Fair Trade Certified Line

by | Oct 4, 2017

Clothing brand Patagonia announced that two of its best-selling lines, Better Sweater and Synchilla Snap-T, are now Fair Trade Certified apparel. With the addition of these two lines, 38% of Patagonia’s product line is now Fair Trade Certified.

Patagonia chooses popular product lines that ensure a high volume and significant return for its Fair Trade program because the company pays a premium for `1 Trade products: the extra money goes directly into a workers’ fund, and they decide how to spend it. Thus, every Fair Trade Certified apparel product sold sends money back to the workers who made it.

The Fair Trade Certified Apparel and Home Goods program offers a consumer-facing label that signifies a company’s commitment to ethical production, supporting better wages and safe working conditions. Fair Trade USA says that, in a Globescan study, US consumers say the new products they would most like to see Fair Trade Certified were apparel and textiles.

Patagonia made news in the sustainability world recently with its $700,000 media buy for TV and radio ads in Montana and Utah, and radio ads in Nevada. The company launched its first-ever television ad campaign in response to secretary of the interior Ryan Zinke’s review of the status of 21 national monuments. The ads urged Zinke to recommend that the monuments under review not be scaled back or transferred back to state ownership. They also urged consumers to reach out to Zinke via text to “defend” the national monuments. Patagonia said it was the only public persuasion campaign running that was geared directly toward the review of the national monuments.

While Zinke did not recommend returning any of the national monuments back to state ownership, he did recommend to President Trump that some of them be reduced in size. If boundaries are narrowed, the implication is that those areas may be open to drilling, mining, or other industry. Any areas removed from national monuments would still be under federal control, Zinke said.

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