< Research Reports

Understanding Fairtrade

In December 2017, we carried out a national survey with students in higher and further education to find out more about their views on Fairtrade and ethical purchasing, as well as the action they take in this area.
three students wearing fairtrade banana costumes

The 2111 students who completed the survey told us:

  • 51% had made a purchasing decision in the last month that was influenced by ethical standards and 90% say they want to buy more products that don't harm the people that produce them.
  • 60% say cost is the main barrier to buying ethical products, and 40% say a lack of awareness and availability of information about ethical credentials prevents them from buying such products.
  • 52% say accreditation marks are the most trusted source of information on the ethical credentials of products.
  • 94% had seen the Fairtrade logo before, and associated with workers and farmers being paid a fair price for the goods they produce.
  • University, college and students' union cafes are the main places respondents say they have seen Fairtrade products available on campus.
  • Respondents thought their university or college could do more to support Fairtrade by promoting and selling more products, and raising awareness of the concept.


Students, ethical purchasing and Fairtrade - 2018